Hello dear one
I hope you are feeling resourced and relatively safe during this challenging time. I know we are all affected in different ways, and I want to honor and validate your experience of this COVID-19 event, and also the effects it’s having on you. Please know that whatever you are experiencing is a normal response to a very stressful situation, and also that you are not alone. We are all in this together, affected individually and collectively.
My doctor sent me through some suggestions for staying healthy during this time, so I thought I’d pass them on to you. Thanks to Christian Wessling, M.D., Cindy Willbrand, Barbie Schnarr, R.N.. and Staff at Webster Family Physicians for these tips that I pass on, lovingly, to you.
Keep a diet of healthful foods to support your immune system. Whole foods, preferably organic, are the best in the current situation.
See if you can navigate towards fruits and honey for your sweet treats. Manufactured products that contain refined sugar, like sweets, cakes, cookies, and soda might taste good in the moment, but they’re not your immune system’s friend. Similarly, alcohol, refined “white” grain products, foods from fast food places, and anything you are known to be allergic to, or that has caused adverse reactions for you in the past, are not supportive of your physical health right now. And if there ever was a time your physical health was important, it’s now!
Sleep is important. Try to get enough of it!! I lay in bed for 10 hours a night, and I know that’s what my body needs. An act of self-compassion and self-care is to sleep in a fully darkened, quiet room that is totally dedicated to sleeping, and free of electronics or work related items.
Stay physically active and exercise regularly, but avoid extreme exercise which is known to actually weaken immune function. If you haven’t been active, start something really gentle like walking or gentle stretching. Dancing to your favorite music or boogying in your chair are great options!
When you can, spend time outdoors in natural light which is known to reduce infectious risks.
While practicing physical distancing, do what you can to invite nurturing thoughts and experiences into your day. Bring your mindfulness skills in so that you can be aware when you are being drawn into media or conversations in a way that is creating more anxiety for you. Fearful thinking is known to interfere with healthy immune function. Practice prayer and meditation, and tend to the inner garden of your soul, working to remain in a calm and harmonious frame of mind.
Be strong in your acts of kindness toward others. We need each other right now, even if it’s just to say hello to help with the challenges of isolation. Once again, we are all in this together.
If you develop fever and cough, it is reasonable that you seek testing at one of the designated testing stations in the community. If you have shortness of breath, are elderly or have an immune system weakened by illness, consider seeking inpatient care – a hospital may be the safest place for you!
I care deeply for you and I don’t want you to have to experience more stress than you need to. I know we don’t necessarily get to choose our levels of stress, but doing just one of the things suggested above might move your nervous system into a feeling of empowerment rather than fear.
Please reach out to your resources and take care of yourself. And know that “this too, shall pass.”
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