Journey to Self-Care

I’m a huge proponent of self-care.

Life gets busy, more and more things take up our time, and little people (along with big people too) demand our attention. And eventually we can end up depleted with nothing more to give.

That’s right, nothing. Nada. Zilch.

Are you tracking with me? I mean nothing.

And once we get to that point, it takes a lot to replenish ourselves back to a functioning state. Only to instantly be depleted once again in record time.
Somehow we as a culture forget to do PREEMPTIVE self-care. Taking care of ourselves BEFORE there is nothing left. What’s ironic is that we also as a culture forget to do preventive care of so many other things too. How many of us actually get a yearly physical? Or eat the foods our body actually needs for true nourishment (real talk here – I just finished a piece of full calorie pecan pie, so I’m preaching to myself here.) Do we do cardio exercise multiple times a week to keep our hearts healthy? I wonder how many people actually do their recommended car maintenance at 50,000 miles or 75,000 miles. Or even more simply, do we get enough sleep at night to be able to think clearly in the morning without the glorious brewed substance that fills us with delight and energy?

You feel me here? 

We are HORRIBLE at taking care of ourselves. 

God forbid we close our office door occasionally to enjoy some quiet while we work. 

Take time to go to the bathroom in the middle of the workday? *Gasp* Unheard of.

Sit on the couch during the kids’ nap time and CHOOSE to read a book?! The horror! There are three day old dishes to be done and bits of Cheez-its ground into the carpet that need vacuumed. Not to mention the piles of clean laundry cluttering up the place, and dirty socks strewn about. 
We have so many things pulling at us on any given day, why don’t we plan ahead some time to take care of ourselves?! Yes, it’s hard. Yes, you may feel guilty about it. But eventually…eventually…you will start to feel the joy inside you again. Pure joy. Not the fake kind we put out on social media.
Not too long ago I was reading a book about how to go after your dreams. It was a great book, but I had to stop reading it. I felt paralyzed. I had been so incredibly busy for so long with day-to-day stuff, that I didn’t have a single dream that I could write down. Honestly? I cried. I felt like a failure. Who doesn’t have at least one dream that didn’t include clean bathrooms, an empty sink and perfectly behaved children?! 

I finally sat down with a piece of paper and just started brainstorming. It started off pretty basic, with things that I love like “help others” and “have an organized house” but as it grew, I started to find “me” again. A few weeks later when I looked at the list again I had a revelation. These were all self-care things.

Things that would refuel my soul. 

Putting things down on paper radically changed things for me. Even though it was incredibly hard when I started doing it, looking back when I see that paper I see myself. I see how God wired me. And I see how God was guiding me towards change. Towards him and inwardly into myself as well. I was lost for a bit, but now I am found. I was blind to myself, but now I see. God opened my eyes, and I pray he will open yours up too. But just know, it may come with some work first. And walking through the hard to find yourself again.