Ever had someone say to you that “You just need to pull yourself up by your boot straps!”? (I’m imaging it in a gruff, manly kind of voice.) It’s kind of an annoying phrase, especially when directed to one who is suffering from depression or chronic illness such as fibromyalgia. But, that is exactly what I’ve been doing for these last few hours of the day. To be honest, I wouldn’t be surprised if I had a bit of help from above, because my body felt completely sunken and stuck to my bed and couch for the majority of my day. I was in and out of sleep, I ached, I moaned (only in my head) and I felt awful, physically and emotionally.
Finally, somewhere around 3:30 I got up and into a nice hot bath. Just prior to that I told my 5 year old that I was headed to take a shower or a bath. He told me that he thought I should take a bath, so I followed his instructions. Turns out he knew what I needed. I soaked up some self-love in that bathtub. I was then able to face some of the tasks that I had been dreading all day long, one of them being a trip to the grocery store.
Funny how those things you dread most often turn around to be highlights. My trip to the grocery store was my first real venture out in days. We have been cooped up like chickens this week due to a snow storm and chill-you-to-the-bone temperatures. So my trip to the store happened to be a step back in the direction toward a sound mind.
I made good selections at the grocery store, too. I had a little pep talk with myself in the bathtub earlier, asking myself if I was ready to make changes or if I wanted to continue to feel like dog doo! I decided I would go with the changes. They may be small changes, but baby steps still lead you to the same destination. I picked out a lot of fresh greens and some fruits and vegetables. I decided I would rather spend the extra money on fresh produce if it meant my body might feel better. So I splurged on the over-priced strawberries and blueberries…two of my favorites! I checked a few labels that I normally would not have looked at, for example bar-b-que sauce. I found a sauce that was made without high fructose corn syrup (or corn syrup of any kind) and with a list of ingredients I could read and understand. It was a successful little adventure that I certainly did not foresee enjoying in any way.
I was able to fix dinner and I even de-boned a chicken for the first time in my life. (I don’t like getting messy in the kitchen, actually, I just hate messing with meat, ick.) I kind of cheated, it was a rotisserie chicken, so it wasn’t uncooked meat. But still, I did it!
After dinner, I experienced some parenting challenges. I had to give myself a time out on one occasion and count to ten so I did not lose my cool. After the challenges (cool intact), I was able to get my children to bed peacefully. I am pretty sure they both are resting peacefully right now and feeling loved.
What a success! It certainly wasn’t a full day’s worth, but it was all the day that I had left. Me and my depressed, aching self pulled up our boot straps and made the most of it! I feel good about that. I don’t know what tomorrow will hold, but I know I’ve got a refrigerator stocked with some healthy goodies. I’m going to focus on that and hang on to that self-love I soaked up in the bathtub. I think it will come in handy.