Speed limits are there for a reason. They are put in place because tests have been done to see what is the “safe speed” for that road. It takes into consideration curves, hills, schools, etc. When we exceed those safe limits, we put everyone including ourselves in danger.
I know for some of you, this might come as a shocker but we all have individual limits. I apologize, I have to inform you Peter, you are not The Hulk or Muscle Man. You cannot do everything. I am the worst about pushing my limits.
This weekend, after our senior dog passed away Friday afternoon, I decided that we were going to rip the carpet out of our house since it was just disgusting. I’m also one of those who stress cleans and organizes when they are upset. I found out that Friday morning one of my friends had passed away so it was just fuel to the fire.
While I gave it a valiant effort to help my husband rip the carpet out of our hallway and living room, I pushed myself a little further than I should have and as we were about halfway done, the train completely ran out of steam and I felt like I could barely hold myself up.
I usually am pretty good about knowing when ‘enough is enough’ but sometimes, especially when I am upset or in a particular state of mind where something is going to get done, I push myself.
Many of you know that I also have Fibromyalgia on top of Congenital Heart Defects, this plays a role in my limits as well. I woke up this morning in a huge flare and I had made myself physically sick and had to call out of work. Not one of my proudest moments. I slept until almost 11 am.
As members of the CHD community we need to realize our limits and understand that we are not Wonder Woman or Super Man. Some days we feel like we can take on the world and other days we barely get out of bed. If you are a parent of a CHD patient, you also need to realize your child’s limits and understand not to push them beyond those. If they say they are tired or need to rest, let them rest.
Something that concerns me is when parents (CHD parents and non CHD parents alike) have their children in sports and the child is physically sick from exhaustion, heat exahustion, etc. and they say they need to sit down and the Coach won’t let them. All you are doing is causing more harm. You are not benefiting your team in any way.
We all have limits, some are similiar and some are different. We all do things at a different pace.
Understand your boundaries and limits and recognize if you can no longer do as much as you use to. If your limits change, consult your Cardiologist to ensure it isn’t anything worrisome.
Do not let someone else push you beyond what you feel you can do. You will only hurt yourself. Be your own advocate and clearly state when you need to stop or take a break. Advocate for your children as well and teach them to advocate for themselves. If necessary, get a note from a Doctor stating you or your child’s limitations.
I understand how important it is to want to be like everyone else but we aren’t like everyone else. There aren’t even two people with the same CHD that are identicial, we may have similar stories but we don’t have the same limitations because there are other parts that play a role in it.
Stay Strong & Creative,