In my last blog, I mentioned that I’d joined a pickleball Meetup in Chicago. Here’s what I didn’t mention: I had a bad fall.
Now I’ll admit I’m a bit klutzy but the court has been painted on cracked asphalt, which makes for dangerous conditions. During play, I caught the edge of my running shoes (not ideal for court play) as I was shuffling backwards and fell hard.
I did not have the chance (or the reflexes) to break my fall so I landed first on my back and then my skull hit the pavement with a loud smack. I’ve never hit my head before and I now understand the idea of “seeing stars”!
Here’s what happened next…
I immediately jumped up, disregarding the throbbing skull and abrasions down my back. When asked if I was OK, I responded I was fine and insisted we resume play.
I was NOT fine. I was feeling unsteady on my feet and a bit faint. It didn’t help that we were playing in the hot sun.
God forbid I let on that I needed a break. That I admit the spill had shaken me and that what I really wanted was to sit down in the shade and cool off with some water.
Look away everyone. I’m tough. Nothing to see here!
I certainly didn’t want to interrupt play. To inconvenience anyone on my account.
Don’t mind me. No trouble here. So sorry to bother everybody.
What the heck is that? That reflex to NOT take up others’ time and concern? That instinct to NOT call attention to my needs and my pain? To NOT take care of myself?
I know I’m not alone in this. I see it with the women I encounter, my friends and the members of my THRIVE Personal Growth Community. We are so programmed to put everyone else first, even total strangers!
We can do better for ourselves. It must begin today.
I have so much unlearning to do. My new awareness—hitting me over the head, literally—is a beginning. I will work to claim my needs moving forward.
YOUR TURN: Do you relate? How do you put yourself last, even when it hurts your wellbeing? How can you prioritize you?