Many of us struggle to take care of ourselves.
For those who have suffered trauma taking care of ourselves is essential to healing. However giving ourselves permission to take care of ourselves can be hard. I personally struggle with this often.
Trauma is damage to the psyche and you can’t see it from the outside. There are no broken bones or lost limbs. Many of us do not feel like we can make the extra effort to tend to our inner wounds. If you broke your ankle none of the people in your life would expect you to just go on with life as usual. They would make accommodations and offer help.We have seen campaigns to raise money for kids with cancer to cover medical expenses but not for kids who have been molested.
In the last few years there have been more and more studies that show how the effects of trauma/PTSD can also linger in physical ways as well. We now know about Adverse Childhood Experiences ( ACEs) and how they effect us as adults. However knowing and applying that information in meaningful ways is another story.
In the last few months I have shared my story on an international show, spoke with reporters and done a lot of work to raise awareness of child marriage. In doing this I have had to open the door to my trauma and have had to process all of this on the go. For the most part I have taken great care of myself emotionally. My mood for the most part has been pretty even and I have reached out to my support system when needed. I am OK.
But there is another part to me that I don’t talk about much. I have really bad food allergies. Certain foods cause really bad inflammation and autoimmune reactions. I get everything from rashes, painful swollen joints, head aches and massive digestion issues. It has even gotten so bad that I ended up in the hospital once with a failing liver YIKES! When I don’t consume these foods I feel 20 years younger and my body is pain free. So then why do I EVER eat things that cause me so much trouble? That’s a great question. The excuse I use most often is that it requires to much time and effort. The shopping, food prep, cooking etc.. I know this excuse is BS because I have so much more energy and much less down time due to pain. The time that these flare ups consume is much more that the time involved in eating well.When my daughter was diagnosed with the same issue, I went to stores all over the city and came up with a plan. That was 10 years ago and things are much easier to find these days! I believe that if I am honest with myself I believe that I am not worth the extra time and effort. It’s time I changed this belief and took better care of my body. I am even going to through in some exercise too! I am going to rearrange my priorities to take better care of myself and ditch the excuses.
How have you been neglecting yourself because deep down you don’t feel like you are worth the time and effort? As always I love hearing from all of you and please join the conversation on our Facebook page or Instagram. Have a great week everyone and remember; self care is an everyday not just Sunday!
To learn more about ACEs, see below.