This morning I fell down the stairs.

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Here is the latest blog post from Alison Jones, our LfE fellow:

 

This morning I fell down the stairs.

I woke up and my first thought is always ‘a nice cup of tea’ so I got up and headed for the kitchen.

As my heel slipped over and beyond the edge of the second step I realised this was not going to end well and in that often-reported, slow-motion sort of way, I crashed bottom first, toe and groin twisting second, forearms third, bump, bump ,bump into the stairwell.

I knew, as I righted myself that there was no significant personal injury but my goodness I was shocked.

My 2 boys were still asleep and blissfully unaware. They would need breakfast and guidance for their home school day. A work day for me too, thankfully: zoom teaching, data crunching and emails so no need to ‘let anyone down’.

I’m really sore now. I think I’ve responded to everything I really needed to today as well as I can. Plus, my boys have been kind to me, they’ve eaten, done school work and we managed a short dog walk (knowing that I needed keep moving and stretch my aching muscles).

So now it’s 10pm and I’ll admit, I’ve had a relaxing glass of wine.


This experience has given me a new analogy, a fresh insight.

We ‘got up’ wanting our usual days in March 2020 only to fall into the stairwell of CoViD19.

Copied and pasted from above: ‘I knew, as I righted myself that there was no significant personal injury but my goodness I was shocked.’

I am incredibly blessed that no-one in my closest circle of family and friends has passed away this year. However, as healthcare professionals, we are dealing with a pandemic. For many there have been considerable personal consequences plus everything else that life can throw at us like loss/hurt/conflict/illness other than CoViD and serious social and political concerns  …

I thought, as an active member of the LfE movement, research and well-being teams, I understood or at least empathised with much of what was being experienced. Still, it took a profound shock and the consequent physical limitations to help me understand more deeply the real impact of all the anxiety and threat we are managing at this time.

Copied and pasted from above: ‘I’m really sore now. I think I’ve responded to everything I really needed to today as well as I can. Plus, my boys have been kind to me, they’ve eaten, done school work and we managed a short dog walk’.

In the last 48 hours I have felt anxious, tearful and rather fuzzy-headed and I have been forced to pay attention to these symptoms. Of course this is an entirely human, even predictable response to a tumble down the stairs. But it has made me wonder – how many of us are currently functioning at this level which feels ‘less’ somehow and compromises home and/or work as necessary as each day in CoViD recovery unfolds?

So this is my opportunity to ask ‘How are you?’ ‘How are you really?’ and to say ‘Take good care of yourselves and each other’. Here are few Appreciative Inquiry-style questions for you to play with when you have a minute:

How can I use the current slower pace of life to notice feelings and emotions in myself and others?

What resources do I have to help me cope (or even to thrive)?

How am I expressing gratitude, moving my body, getting outside, helping others today?

Which stories do I want to be part of in 2020?


Alison Jones

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