One of the things I’m working on right now is being nicer to myself and engaging in self-care. Being able to Recognize some of the obstacles between myself and practicing self-care is huge progress. Currently, I’m staring down that hurdle I like to call ” perceived expectations” or “inherited guilt.” Mainly, I’m trying to allow the home to be equal responsibility between myself an my husband, instead of mentally beating myself up for the way my apartment looks right now. Every dirty dish and piece of laundry is a symbol of my shame. But, just because I’m a lady doesn’t mean I have to be the primary homemaker and caretaker. Jim readily supports this type of thinking. It’s my own perception that if I get “help” from him, I will not be living up to my potential. I know that’s bullshit! And, here’s where it gets complicated, it’s the fact that I even let that bullshit be in my brain that makes me feel terrible about myself.
SILLINESS. COUNTERPRODUCTIVE SILLINESS!
I’m trying to remind myself every chance I get that, yes, past Heidi did allow that stuff to get in my brain. But she may have been a child at the time and is not here now, so getting angry at present-in-the-moment Heidi helps no one. It helps none of the Heidis anywhere, at any time.
So what does help? Kindness. Deep breaths. Telling myself that it’s not about how the crap got in there, it’s about fighting the crap here and now. Sometimes that looks like a hot bath. Sometimes it’s a healthy dinner. Often, it’s an early bedtime with puppy snuggles. But whatever it is, it’s important that I ask myself “what can I do RIGHT NOW to make this better?” Finding effective self-care solutions can be a process of trial and error, just as much of life is. I’m trying to accept that in order to progress, there will be errors. There have been errors. Fact. Truth. No amount of being hard on myself will change that. So I may as well accept it and try to be happy. And boy does it take a lot of try, these days. But that’s ok – I’ve got a lot of willingness to try.