December 9th: What Do You Owe Yourself?
Recently, I saw some great stuff about self-care not always being about bubble baths and pedicures and let me tell you this: I agree wholeheartedly! Indulging ourselves from time to time is absolutely important, and you should make time for these things, yes- but is that truly the essence of self-care?
Uh-uh. No, not by a long shot.
As the little blurb I saw went on to say, sometimes self-care really means taking care of your finances, sticking to a budget, giving up some luxuries you don’t need so that you can accomplish something you do need or want.
Sometimes self-care means taking a good hard look at the negative patterns in your life and figuring out where it started, or, more importantly, when you are going to see it end. Caring for yourself means to look after yourself the way a good parent would- limiting your intake of bullshit and putting yourself in time out when you are acting up. Being loving, but firm.
Self-care means getting your shit together. Facing your problems. Seeing yourself as you truly are and owning that- not blaming it on your terrible childhood or your ex-boyfriend, your trauma…because the truth is, we ALL have trauma. We are ALL recovering from something that has wounded us. There is not a soul on this earth who doesn’t carry scars.
Getting better, healing- it’s a lot of work. It’s a job that never ends. Not everyone is even aware enough to undertake it. Lots of people are comfortable with their familiar routine of turning a blind eye to the truth, hiding their heads in the sand, identifying with their less than ideal lot in life.
I’m going to tell you something- the past five years of my life have been the hardest, the most grueling years I have ever known. They have also been the most rewarding and happiest. The work I have put in…when I look back, it blows my mind. While I was going through it, it seemed bumpy, sure. But when I look back at all of it, it’s hard to believe I made it through. But I did, one slow step at a time. No one will ever know, really, except for me, the things that went on…because 90% of it was internal. Yet I am more proud of the way I cared for myself, the way I carried myself, through that, than I am of anything else I have ever done.
So…what do you owe yourself? You owe yourself the best life you are capable of giving you. That will look different for every person reading this, but…I encourage you to really ask yourself “How’s it looking?” and “Where am I now? Where do I want to be? How do I get from here to there?”. Look, this is not a dress rehearsal. This is it. This is your life, right now. Take care of you. And I don’t mean taking a bubble bath.