THE BLISSFUL WAY BACK
By: Lauren Anderson
If you’ve been following along, last week I mentioned that I had a cold.
I was wrong. I had THE COLD.
And sleep helped, and eventually cured me– so I wasn’t wrong about that. But boy oh boy!
Almost immediately after I hit “publish” on last week’s blog, my recovery made a turn for the worst. By midnight that night I was in a 24 hour urgent care, because I noticed some white bumps on my uvula. Thank goodness for the flashlight on my iPhone. Oh yeah, and did I mention it felt like I was swallowing glass?
After about the quickest urgent care visit I’ve ever experienced (Miracle!), the doctors and nurses swabbed me and set me up in a room only to tell me 45 minutes later, “Sorry Kid. You got a cold.”
No, they didn’t really call me kid. But I felt silly. Cause now I just spent hundreds of dollars for this very competent team of medical professionals to tell me there’s nothing they can do for me. I just have to “wait it out”.
My doctor says, “What have you been taking so far?”
I answer, “The typical. Dayquil, Nyquil, Ibuprofen, Riccola.”
Then she goes, “Yeah. Keep doing that.”
She also prescribes me something called “Magic Mouthwash” that will basically numb my throat for 30 minutes so I can eat something. Then they send me on my merry way. But not before giving me a little bit more information.
Apparently, I got something called “The Coxsackie Virus”
Yeah… I laughed when I heard the name too. Hehehehehe.
It’s the grown up equivalent to when kid’s get Hand Foot and Mouth disease. And it is no joke. Think of every cold symptom you could have, multiply it by 2, and then give yourself the WORST SORE THROAT IN THE HISTORY OF SORE THROATS, and that’s Coxsackie baby!
But because it’s a virus and not a bacteria like strep throat, there’s nothing to treat. I just have to let it run it’s course. Ugh.
Needless to say I was out for the rest of the week. But my illness was compounded by the fact that we opened our holiday show that Friday! And we had preview performances leading up to opening. This show is easily our biggest and most popular one of the year. So I wasn’t able to just rest and relax. There’s no calling in sick at a job like this…
I had to perform comedy for hundreds of people, all while not being able to swallow. I don’t know how I did it, but I somehow did. I love my job, and I would do anything for it. I think I proved that. Because If I ever questioned my resolve to be an entertainer before, I sure answered it this week. The show must go on dammit! CUE THE LIGHTS!!!
Thankfully, my director and cast were about as accommodating as they possibly could be. Each one nurturing me and looking out for me, while simultaneously keeping a healthy distance.
When I awoke on Sunday, and swallowed without pain for the first time in a week– I was overjoyed. I checked the mirror, no more white bumps! Looks like I had finally sacked the Coxsackie.
I still have a stuffy nose, and some pressure on my ears… but who doesn’t in November in Minnesota?
I haven’t taken anything in two days, and I’m feeling so much better. So now it’s time to get my life back on track. And it’s time to get back to the gym! Except, I was feeling kind of shy about it. It’s been a while now. Almost three weeks between opening the show and my illness… that’s a long time to be away!
It kinda feels like I’m coming home from the stupidest vacation. Only instead of feeling refreshed and renewed and ready to head back out into the world, I’m feeling kinda puny. Kinda like how you’d feel if you only ate bone broth and honey for a week…
I’m glad to be back, but I was gone long enough that falling back into a routine seems weird. I almost don’t know where to start.
So what do I do? I mobilize!
Not sure if I was up for the intensity that is a typical CrossFit class, I decide to do a mobility class instead. This would help get me back in my body, and moving and stretching without wondering if I was over-doing it.
Amelia is my instructor, and I’m excited because I’ve known her for years, but this is my first class I’ve taken with her.
There are only 2 other people in class. Laurel and Nate. We set up our mats and get to stretching in a quiet and cozy space. This is just what I needed!
It’s all long holds in in deep stretches for 40 minutes. I’m opening my hips and using squash balls to dig into the sore muscles of my lower back. It’s everything I want, and nothing I don’t. And it feels so good to be moving my body again.
Amelia tells us about the things she’s read, Laurel and Nate make me laugh. I can feel myself coming back to myself. And I’m proud of going slowly.
When I get sick, I spend a long time being frustrated with my body for not behaving the way I want it to. Forgetting about all the hard work it was doing to expel the Coxsackie from this unsuspecting host. It’s easy to take everything my body does for granted… this mobility class felt like an act of reparation. Of saying Thank You, and I’m sorry you had to go through that mess buddy.
By the time the we were done, everyone was blissed out and feeling groovy. Not a bad way to be on a cold Monday night. And not a bad reminder that my body can feel good.
I talk a lot about finding an avenue in. How things that seem difficult are really hard because we haven’t found a path that suits our needs yet. This mobility class was one of the rare times in my life where I felt like I gave my body exactly what it needed. The avenue back to the gym. In the most blissful way possible.
Take that Coxsackie!