"I've spent my life jumping on and off planes, and now I couldn't get out of bed."
A more personal story to share with you today.
Behind the veneer of LinkedIn posts - there's a lot I'm carrying at the moment you may not know.
That's why I love this graphic by Liz + Mollie - it highlights the load we carry compared to what others see.
We never know the full extent of what people are facing and that's why a default mode of compassion and humanity is so important.
So, here we go.
Here's what you haven't seen on social.
I've spent the past few months flat on my back. Not a good place to be.
I was hit by a car in late January whilst cycling and then suffered a freak fall a month later.
As a result, I've got some debilitating physical injuries I'm dealing with.
"It's pretty messy," my doctor says.
Not what I want to hear.
The first challenge I faced was a total loss of independence and a new reliance on everybody for everything.
I've spent my life jumping on and off planes, and now I couldn't get out of bed.
Thankfully my family has been right by my side - helping me every step of the way - literally.
For months, the pain was constant.
It was like a never ending fever that just wouldn't break.
My body hurt when I slept. It hurt when I was awake.
It was a win when it hurt a little less.
With a 12 month recovery horizon, getting well is a full time job and I'm determined to not only get better but stronger.
I'm always setting recovery goals - that's not to say I'm pushing myself too hard - I'm being careful - I'm mindful I only get one chance at a proper recovery.
As I slowly heal, I celebrate every small win.
Getting out of bed. Win.
Walking a few metres. Win.
Sitting on a chair. Win.
As of today, I'm also strong enough to alternate between my crutches and an old school walking stick - another win!
If you know me personally, you know I'm pretty determined.
My focus is on moving forward and that's exactly what I'm doing [at the right pace].
Coincidentally 'Forward' is also the theme we've set at work for the year - most appropriate.
So with going forward in mind, I've replaced meetings with startup founders and entrepreneurs with a new routine around medical treatments and health goals.
Hydrotherapy every day. Physiotherapy every Thursday. Myotherapy, acupuncture + Chinese herbs every Friday. The list goes on and it all continues.
I'm so fortunate to be in a country where the best health care is both accessible and affordable.
I'm also fortunate to work with a company that shows compassion, understanding and flexibility - proving yet again the future of work is emotional.
Whilst I still have a long way to go to a full recovery - I recognise the important lessons I've learnt along the way and how they're shaping my thinking.
It takes time for the lessons to become apparent and I know there are many more to come.
For the first few months, my brain was foggy and I was unable to concentrate or even verbalise a solid coherent sentence.
Since then though, I've had moments of hyper clarity in which I've been able to:
- Rethink and reset priorities
- Get a fresh perspective
- Find a renewed focus
- Breathe in, breathe out
- Cut myself some slack
So many life impacting lessons about resilience and patience.
The importance of deeply appreciating and respecting those that stand by your side when you need it most.
The importance of health and well being and proactively making time for relaxation, mindfulness and just being nourished and comfortable.
Most importantly, I'm also learning to pause and not race through my days - I'm stretching out this thing called life for as long as I can.
So many more lessons to learn. I'm open to learning them.
See there's a lot going on for me and I'm sure for you too.
As you navigate through your day connecting with the people around you or Zooming your way through work - remember the circle and the dot.
We see only a fraction of what the people around us are carrying.
Show empathy and kindness - this is when we all need it most.
Thanks for reading.
If there's anything I can do to help, hit me up.
If someone you know will find this story useful, please feel free to share it with them.