“You are severely dehydrated” is the only thing I heard my doctor say as she was explaining my diagnosis of bronchitis. As she continued to talk about my symptoms, I was still fixated on the thought of being dehydrated and dry.
My mind was racing through the day before with snapshots of every liquid I drank. I thought I drank more water than coffee and tea. Not.
“How did I get so dry?” I guess I asked the question out loud because my doctor answered.
She gave me the basics, like our body is mostly water, up to 65 percent. To make sure you are hydrated, she said, the general rule is to drink eight, 8-ounce servings of water a day. Actually, it’s more like 2.2 liters or 74 ounces. But eight times eight is easier to remember.
I guess my concern was showing on my face, so her tone softened. She told me I wasn’t a failure and that most people drink less in the winter. Do we sweat in the winter, I asked? Yes, and especially if we have hot flashes (which I do but, that’s another blog).
And, the big problem about winter is that we don’t always feel thirsty, which is a natural reminder that we need to drink water. She made me feel a lot better about being dehydrated, like it wasn’t all my fault.
I know that I can sometimes get discouraged by the magnitude of the task and end up doing nothing.
But, on the drive home with a bottle of water in hand, I began to feel overwhelmed at the thought of not taking in enough water each day. I know that I can sometimes get discouraged by the magnitude of the task and end up doing nothing.
We cannot live without water. So, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time. I have asked a few friends to take the Samaritan woman “Give me a drink” challenge with me (John 4:13-15).
For 30 days we will:
- Assess where we are each day. How much water do you drink now? Add 8 ounces to it until you make it to eight glasses.
- Choose a time of day to record how many ounces of water you have had.
- At the end of the 30 days, celebrate!
Will you join me?
Valora K Starr is director of discipleship. She oversees the program Raising Up Healthy Women and Girls and so is concerned that all women and girls drink enough water to stay healthy.