February 08, 2006

Taking Care of Me

After a little "meltdown" Sunday night, Robert suggested I take a few days off. No computer, no internet, no writing, no nothing.

"You have to slow down, Hope," he said. And I knew he was right. "Your brain is on overload. You have to take a break."

While I knew in my head that I needed--desperately needed--a break, it took a physical and mental meltdown and my husband pointing it out to force me to do it. Later I mused to Robert, "I don't understand why I would rather continue suffering and hurting myself, than just step away for a few days. It's like I can't be nice to myself."

Sad, but true. For so long, I've been accustomed to just going and doing and never stopping. Even when I recognized the symptoms (anxiety, panic attacks, changes in sleeping patterns, etc.), I still did not stop and allow myself to heal.

Monday morning I woke up and immediately my mind began working. What could I do, since I was officially off work? Laundry. Cleaning. De-cluttering. And then.....I stopped myself.

Wait a minute, I thought. If I were sick with the flu, I wouldn't be running around trying to catch up on housework or anything else for that matter. I would sit back, snuggle with my favorite blanket and just take care of me.

So that's what I did. And I have to tell you that was the best thing I could have done. I simply took care of me. I was kind to myself, instead of beating myself over the head (mentally) for all the things I didn't get done that day.

I'm not totally "healed" yet. I don't think it's something that can happen in a few days. I liken it to having a serious illness. If you're not careful, if you try to do too much too soon, you'll relapse. So I'm taking it slow.

I'm still working, but am doing a lot of my work offline. So if you email me and I don't reply right away, know that I'm not greeting you with silence. I am re-prioritizing. God didn't intend for me to be a zombie, constantly "on," and never thinking of myself first. I'm cutting back the fat, in order to be a more healthy, productive me.

Oh, yes. One last thought to share before I head out for the day. Pay attention to your dreams. They can be very revealing. (I don't believe every dream means something, but sometimes you have one every now and then that really sticks out and stays with you once you're awake.)

Last night I dreamed something really weird and crazy. After waking, the dream stayed with me. More specifically, throughout the entire dream, two numbers kept being talked about over and over--the numbers seven and ten. Look at what these numbers represent:

Seven signifies mental perfection, healing, completion, music and attainment of high spirituality. Additionally, you are unique and eccentric.

Ten corresponds to closure, great strength, and gains.

Oh yes...I know that I'm on the right path to taking care of myself.

Take care of you today!