It’s fall. In Oregon this means that the rains come back and it gets cold, grey and windy out. And for many people it means getting sick. Runny nose, stuffy head, coughing, upset stomach, fatigue, fever, chills and aches, … all that good stuff.
And then we say to ourselves: ” Why am I sick again? What did I do wrong? I hate being sick! How do I get out of here as quickly as possible?”
Wait! Slow down! Before you reach for that bottle of NyQuil or other pharmaceutical designed to suppress your symptoms so you can go back to work, consider another perspective.
Your body is transitioning from summer to winter. Everything is changing: warm to cold, dry to wet, outside to inside, lots of fun in the sun to busy work. Your body needs some time to adjust. Your gut bacteria has to change to meet the fall foods. Your mucus membranes and lymphatic system have to gear up for a different range of bacteria and viruses. Your body temperature and fat layers need to adapt to the weather.
I’ve heard from some of my mentors that those of us who get a little sick several times a year tend live longer because we’re not building up so many toxins. The immune system is designed to flush out the body on a regular basis. And fevers are a great support to the immune system.
This all takes time and energy. So when you feel sick, don’t ask “How do I get rid of this?” ask yourself instead: ” What is the best way I can support my body?”
Do what the old, wise women have always said: Stay warm. Drink plenty of fluids. Rest a lot and eat simple foods. This is the time for chicken broth and soups, immune boosting teas and warm baths.
My favorite recipe:
Drink herbal tea: chamomile, yarrow and peppermint tea
Take a long, hot Epsom salt or mustard bath
Get in bed under lots covers and sweat it all out
If you want to take full advantage of this forced quite time, use it to get deep into your psyche and clear out some mental sludge as well. The lucid moments between fever dreams are the perfect time for meditating on your physical, mental and emotional symptoms.
When you take that first sign of “getting sick” as a reminder to take extra good care of yourself, you will transition into fall smoother and be able to get back to work and all the excitement of life sooner. In fact you may feel refreshed, rejuvenated and full of creative energy.
I just took a few extra days of rest in bed and today I am back, getting stuff done, inspired to write blog posts.
Don’t just take my word for it, give it a try and let me know how it goes.