I don’t suppose that title will make this article a best seller. It certainly doesn’t seem to fit with a culture of self-empowerment and I don’t suppose it would sell many books! But bare with me; I’ll try to explain why admitting I’m powerless over this wretched disease is actually a positive step.
It isn’t a popular thing to admit our weaknesses or to proclaim ineptitude. But I’d like to do just that. When it comes to fighting covid and the effects it has on my body, I am completely powerless. I didn’t have a say in catching the disease (nine months ago now) and I don’t have a say in what it is physically doing to me. (Long) Covid will run its own course and I am forced to bow to it’s superiority. My goodness, that sounds bleak, I seem to have become the harbinger of doom.
But here’s why I think it’s so important to admit I am powerless over covid. So long as I assume to have any power over it, I pick a fight that I cannot win and which will likely cause me grief. It’s like my picking a fight with Mike Tyson, as soon as I step into the ring I am done for. When that bell rings, it will be a matter of seconds before I am knocked to the floor – likely never to get up!! If I fail to accept the limitations that covid has placed on me, I will continue to fall prey to its effects. I will continue to over-do things, bite off more than I can chew, spend more energy than I have and once again end up feeling beaten, exhausted and defeated.
It might sound odd to say that I need to embrace covid and its effects on my life, but like it or not, I’m a passenger on this journey. As I learn to accept this fact, I can allow my mind to open to what is possible for me at this time, and spend my energy there, rather than on fighting against what I can’t change. I’m still not at work, I can’t ride my bike in the hills and my brain is proper slow. But today I have had a difficult and necessary conversation with someone, and I’ve written a small blog. That’s up on yesterday when all I achieved was a (wobbly) walk to the local coffee shop Carolina’s, to eat cake and have a latte (yes, it was a real hardship).
You see, admitting I’m powerless over something helps me to let go of the things I simply can’t control. It enables me to re-evaluate my situation and then divert my energy to things over which I do have agency. I may be powerless over covid, but I am by no means helpless or useless.
I don’t have a choice about being a covid passenger, but I do have a choice in how I respond. I’m not the same as I was before covid, but for today, I choose to spend my energy on things which matter, things I know I can manage, rather than fighting an exhausting battle of denial which would leave me feeling broken time after time.