Powerless over Covid

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.

2 responses to “Powerless over Covid”

  1. I must have followed you as your blogs appear in my emails! You have a wonderful writing style, I like that you are taking us on this journey with you, and I look forward to ( hopefully) one day reading about the long walks and rides you will do. But we’ve all had to accept the limitations of 2020, I feel I have lost a critical year, at 39 now, I am suddenly petrified I’ve missed the boat for so many things, but like you, I have to accept it, not let it define me….. and like you, I love cake!

    Small steps Tristan! I’m rooting for your recovery!

    And I LOVE your blogs.


  2. I feel like I could have written this! I’ve only just accepted my lack of control in the last week. I’ve given up expecting to be better by any particular time. I also went for a coffee yesterday but wasn’t actually able to walk despite it only being a few mins from my house and I had to admit defeat before I’d even finished my coffee….. But the truth is, accepting it and releasing expectation really helps, strange as it sounds. I love that you describe yourself as a passenger. I’ll be borrowing that. I find it hard when people keep asking when I think I’ll be better/back to work. Others saying it’s crazy that the doctor can’t give me medication or tell me when I’ll recover. It’s hard not to get upset when those of us suffering know that a virus can’t be treated with meds and nobody knows when anyone will recover!!! We’re the Guinea pigs of long covid…..and sometimes it’s just easier to adopt the Guinea pig’s simple way of existing too😜 Stress has been the cause of much deterioration for me. So it’s time to step back, accept what I have no control over and remember that, hopefully, in 5 years time (just the standard 5 year/5 second rule) this will simply be a story I can tell 💕 thanks for sharing


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