I wish this was a metaphor for the power moving out of the community gave me. I spent much of the first year of my daughter’s life immobile, unable to move physically or mentally after such a momentous movement from the velt.
As a result, I grew larger. Eating without moving takes a toll on your body, and I found that the new postpartum clothes if bought myself wouldn’t fit five or ten months after I’d purchased them.
Back problems which had plagued me as a quickly growing teenager resurfaced with a vengeance. I could barely move without tweaking my back. The only answer was to move. I slowly started walking again. Every day, I added more steps and my problems got better. I’m still working on the clothes, but my back magically healed itself and I no longer needed to pop ibuprofens or tylenols like candy.
After a relatively active shabbos playing, walking and enjoying cousins, my daughter and I decided to have a “lazy Sunday”. We loaded up on popcorn and watched movies for most of the afternoon. I had a good conversation with my sons, and felt like I deserved a very laid back day of rest. I didn’t walk, and was exhausted by 9pm.
I paid for it the moment she got up this morning. The rustling of her bedsheets and tiny patting of feet signalled it was time to get up and move for the day.
Only I couldn’t.
My back ached with pain. Sitting up proved too excruciating to handle. I maneuvered across the bed, rolling and dragging, until I could gingerly place my feet down on the floor. I stretched, and immediately knew I was in for a rough day ahead. The ibuprofen made an appearance with coffee.
I wear a fitbit 24/7 (except when it needs a charge or I need a shower). When I look through my step counter and active minutes for Sunday, I cringe. I had about a tenth of my normal step count, and my sleeping pattern shows a restless and inefficient night.
I might try to get out of moving to justify a long day or a rough week, I know definitively I’ll pay for it on the other end. I owe it to myself, I owe it to my kids, to be around long enough to enjoy every ounce of life I can possibly squeeze out.