Self-care is still so stinkin hard for me. It’s hard in the big ways, like taking time to do a face mask or do something simple like paint my nails. It’s hard in the way I think about myself – being thankful and gentle and loving towards myself. The past couple days I have tried to be mindful of how well my body and mind DO work. To notice what they are doing, the things they allow me to accomplish, and how much I do each day. At first, it was seriously hard to think of things, not because they weren’t there, but because I was so not used to being grateful for myself.
I think it’s that lack of gratitude for frankly anything that lead me to the numb spot. It wasn’t just the food that was breaking me, but the outlook on life I had adopted. The way I just let every day happen. I was scheduling them and filling them with stuff but not reaching into myself to feel alive. I disconnected by mind and body and was literally shutting off sensory inputs. When I can’t feel the world around me, I miss the wind going through my fingers on a walk, the feeling of my hamstrings working on a run, the taste of food, my silky sheets, the embrace of a hug. When I don’t feel sensory, tactile things, I don’t feel emotion. It’s all connected. When I’m not feeling emotion, I miss out on cues. I miss that I’m bored, anxious, worried, fearful, sad, angry. I try to manufacture happiness and joy instead of realizing that I truly do have so many reasons to legitimately feel those feelings.
Today I am grateful for the way the sun streams through the leaves, giving off a golden hue. I am thankful that I have money and don’t need to be stressed about it. I am thankful that there is a community of people that make time for me. That I have freedom in the work I am doing. That I have a car to take me places. That I have support. That there is future mercy and grace I can lean into today. That it is fall and I get to be outside so often. I am thankful that I am here in Bloomington, that I have so many learning opportunities to grow in public health, that my brain loves to learn, that I did well on the GRE, that I got to hangout with myself this weekend, that I am in the middle of four books. I am thankful I am alive and well and that Jesus died for me.