It isn’t willpower (part 4)

What turned it around?  I woke up in the middle of the night with my heart racing.  I couldn’t slow it down by focusing on my breathing.  I went to the ER.  I now go to a cardiologist and take medicine for an irregular heart rhythm.  I decided that I got off pretty easy this time, but what about the next time something was wrong?  Did I want to hear that I had cancer?  What about heart problems?  My parents had both died young, one from cancer and one from a heart attack.

Fear motivates me, a little.  But I had to turn around what I do when I feel fear.  Normally fear causes me to retreat.  Normally fear causes me to seek comfort food.  But that is what caused the problem in the first place.  So I stopped smoking and stopped drinking sodas. I lost 20 pounds in a few weeks this way.  That was pretty encouraging.

Here’s another motivator.  I don’t have children.  I don’t have someone who can take care of me when I get older.  So I have to take care of myself now.  I don’t want to get so out of shape that I need help from someone every time I need to go to the bathroom.

Pain was also a problem.  I’d gotten to the point that my knees hurt when I walked up or down stairs.  I was only 40 years old.  I figured I was too young to feel this old, but if that was the way it was, then that was it.  Fortunately my husband had been going to the Y for a while and knew I liked to swim.  We went to the Y and there was a water aerobics class going on at the same time.  I stayed in the back and joined in.  The teacher was enthusiastic and inspiring.  The moves were fun.  I was sore the next morning but I was happy.  I’d found it.  I’d found something that I enjoyed doing.  I thought water aerobics was for little old ladies with arthritis.   It turns out that it was exactly perfect for me.  Keep trying until you find a way to take care of yourself that you will actually do.  The life you save will be your own.


About betsybeadhead

Hello, and Welcome. My name is Betsy, and I like beads and prayers. Fortunately those two things are more related than I ever realized. You are invited to “like” my Facebook page titled “Betsy Beadhead” and thus see what I’m talking about in my posts when I try to explain something using beads rather than words. This whole thing started because of that. Then I couldn't figure out how to post pictures so I just started writing. I string together words the same way I string together beads, and both serve the same purpose. I work at a library, surrounded by ideas brushing up against each other. I draw, paint, and collage. I study world religions. In all these experiences I like combining different things and making new things, and stretching my understanding of what “is” and what “has to be.” You are welcome to share my posts - just please give credit where credit is due. I'm anti-censorship but I'm also anti-plagiarism.
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