5 months of a pandemic world later…
Mental health has been a funny one. It continues to rock my world around on a daily basis…or smash straight through it like a boulder. I’ve experienced some extreme lows and relapses again recently which isn’t great (and crying on a screen to a frozen therapist when you don’t realise they’ve lost connection is always fantastic) but I’ve managed to achieve something with the Couch to 5k running app which I know I wouldn’t have managed or found the motivation for this time last year.
Running is a love hate thing with me. Sometimes I feel good when I’m running but most of the time I absolutely hate it until I get the feeling of accomplishment afterwards. I can now run for 25 minutes which is a massive achievement for someone who could barely walk from the bed to the kitchen on a really bad mental health day! I feel a bit fitter and stronger too! We’ve started a mini running group at work too which keeps me going!
So it’s small steps – I haven’t figured myself out yet mentally but at least I’m improving my physical wellbeing with running. Maybe during my plodding 3 times a week I’ll have time to think about other elements that I’m stuck on in my life!
One comment that people have been saying to me over the past few weeks is “stop being so hard on yourself” or “one step at a time” so maybe that’s what I work on next – trying to be kinder to myself with ‘self-care’. I’m halfway there with running I guess.
But what the F**ck is self-care? Is it just being lazy or is it actually looking after yourself? When does it become too much of doing nothing and not enough of ‘doing life’? Then ironically I feel bad about myself for not doing anything productive…it’s a vicious circle. However, I’m extremely excited for Autumn when I can light a pumpkin spice candle, read a horror story and wrap myself in a blanket listening to the rain.
Maybe self-care isn’t buying the chocolate brownie on a crap day, or eating my feelings with pizza instead of a good cry, maybe it’s standing up for myself and respecting my own feelings more, something alien to me until recently. Or maybe it’s accepting the way I look and not bullying myself in the mirror everyday.
I know it can go too far with me and I use it to avoid responsibilities…watching all the Toy Story films in one weekend to avoid sorting my life out isn’t good…or reading two books like this weekend is escapism to the max but at least I’m aware of that now! No one is going to sort it out for me – I now realise this.
I avoid things I know are going to be emotionally painful or overwhelming to deal with but because of this I’m just stuck going around the hamster wheel. So I think self-care to me is to acknowledge that things are going to be hard but it’s ok to feel like that as long as I’m doing something to help out my future self…although let’s get 2020 out of the way first yeah? – a few more months of crying into a cake wont hurt anyone!