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The Only Cure is Kindness

When it's snowing and I don't have the energy to go play outside, my heart breaks a bit and the little girl inside me lets out a self-pitying wail. But that's how it goes... sometimes it doesn't matter how beautiful it is outside or what plans I have or what errands I need to run. Some really low days, it doesn't even matter what job I need to do... my body and mind say "no". Those days are spent balled up crying, full of self doubt and insecurity. Those days are spent aching, are spent tangled in thoughts, and weary to the core. But I know that there's also some days when anger overwhelms every other emotion. That's when you find yourself furious-

enraged at your body for not doing what you need it to do. You're angry that it's rebelling against your wishes. You're angry that you know what happiness feels like and yet you can't quite grasp it, that because your anxieties are high, you can't go grocery shopping for fear of a panic attack, that your friends don't understand why you had to cancel plans last minute because you're just too tired to function. You're angry that the sales clerk thinks you're rude because you can't dredge up a response to their questions from your closed-up throat, that showering seems like an absolutely daunting task, that you want to talk to somebody but can't get your fingers to dial their number. I know. I know exactly how that feels... The pure rage that flares up out of nowhere when your body doesn't feel like your own, when the world calls you weak or crazy for something you can't control, when the help you need isn't available, and especially when all you want is to feel "normal". I admit, sometimes that anger gives me the strength to plow through how miserable I feel, but more often, being angry leads to further exhausting myself. That's when I have to step back and remind myself that it's okay to have bad days, and admit that I need help. Because, on the days that my body and mind refuse to do what I want, the only cure is kindness. I have to protect my body like it's a fragile thing when really I know the reason why it's fragile today is because yesterday it was unbelievably strong. On those days, I have to treat my mind like a broken bone in a cast, remembering that it has insured much pain and so deserves support- just the same as a physical injury. My body and my mind, I tell myself, have kept me standing tell, working hard, and often smiling wide. I deserve - and require - rest. And there is absolutely nothing wrong with that. I implore you, respect yourself. Thank your body for its endurance. Take a bath, eat some nourishing food. Have patience with your mind, it's not its fault that it spins with stress and falls into depression. Your body, your mind - YOU - are doing so well. Courage yourself by remembering that you are fighting a battle every single day and sometimes every single night too. Honor the work you're doing. Be proud of your strength instead of angry at your weakness. We all hurt sometimes, need help, become scared, we all fall and wonder if were going to be able to get back up. It's ok. Really, it is. Remind yourself that it will be a snowy winter day again and that you do not need to hate yourself for not being able to enjoy it today. Calm your anger. Today you need to stay inside with blanket and essential oil, and comforting words from a trusted friend. Today you must focus on finding your balance once again, because you - your health of mind and body - is important.

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