Self-care which has become somewhat of a buzzword over the last three years has always been somewhat of a source of internal conflict for me. I love talking about it, sharing about it, fantasizing about it, and planning it out because in theory self-care is beautiful, ideal, pretty and instagrammable. In practice? Self-care if you’re really starting from the ground up is daunting and exhausting work. True self-care is messy and not something you really want to post on Instagram.
Today, I had a doctors appointment that I had been avoiding for the last five months. It was hard, it was not fun, and if I could’ve avoided it for another month without feeling incredibly self-neglectful, I gotta tell you…I probably would have. During the appointment, I had a real life panic attack but after it was all said and done, I got some long awaited and much needed answers complete with a solid plan. That doctors appointment was, again- not fun but it was self care, and I didn’t instagram it, take photos, or anything else but I felt so taken care of. I literally thanked God, and then my Mom, and then myself for taking care of me and it felt dang good. I even rewarded myself with a 5- minute nap.
Another self care thing I did today? Therapy. It’s been a while since I’ve been in therapy. Honestly, I hadn’t been able to afford it, then a friend suggested I check out student run clinics- which I can afford. But, you know what therapy wasn’t? Fun. It was not fun, it was not instagrammable, there was nothing pretty about it. Therapy today was actually exhausting, and we didn’t even do any heavy lifting. I didn’t leave feeling like I had conquered the world. I left feeling like, I still have so much work to-do and while I expected some sense of relief there was none for me.
Sometimes, self care doesn’t feel like any progress has been made. It’s like studying the Bible or working out. You study everyday (ideally) whether you get the tingly feeling or not or workout every day (ideally) even if you see no results and your whole body still hurts from the day before. Then, eventually you see gains or see your faith manifest in a way it hasn’t before. Self care is like anything worth having. You work on it diligently, and slowly but surely see fruit and it’s not always pretty sometimes it is pretty dang hard.
I want to know, what self care has looked like for you in the past? tWhat did your groundwork look like? Was it messy or was it flowery and pristine?
I can’t wait to hear from you.