Celebrate the little victories.

Celebrate the little victories.

Some­times forc­ing myself to do self-care things and being proud of myself for doing them takes a lot of ener­gy and effort.

Today is an anx­ious day, and I’m so thank­ful for the anx­i­ety med­ica­tion I can take to help alle­vi­ate that. But it’s also a day where, in order to calm down, I’m hav­ing to spend a lot of time car­ing for myself. And it’s hard not to view that as vain, or shal­low, or self-cen­tered. It’s also hard not to look at what I’m mak­ing myself do and think, “If all of this is so hard and so counter-intu­itive, there’s some­thing wrong with you. You’re weak.”

When my anx­i­ety rose up in my chest and stopped in my throat, chok­ing me, I sat stock still for sev­er­al moments.

Take the pills.”

No, nor­mal peo­ple can calm them­selves down. You just need to get over your­self.”

No, you are hav­ing a pan­ic attack. Take the pills. That will calm you down.”

But if I need the pills, I’m weak!”

Okay, this is what we’re going to do. We’re going to take the pills, then take 10 min­utes to wash your face and do your make­up.”

Ugh. What a self-cen­tered idiot I am. Med­ica­tion and make­up. How priv­i­leged. How weak-mind­ed and weak-willed.”

After a while, I was able to con­vince myself to take the pills and do my make­up. Touch­ing my face, see­ing it as a beau­ti­ful can­vas open to the tools and shad­ows and paints in my hands, helped cen­ter me. When I was done, I saw Dani look­ing back at me in the mir­ror, not Jerk­Brain or PANIC.

Okay. Now you’re going to fix a cup of cof­fee, and refill your water. Don’t for­get your oth­er vit­a­mins and pills.”

I took all of my morn­ing med­i­cines, for all of my vit­a­min defi­cien­cies and com­pli­ca­tions from poly-cys­tic ovar­i­an syn­drome, and care­ful washed them down with water. I ate two pro­tein bars and drank my cof­fee, review­ing my to-do list for the day.

Notic­ing I was cold, I pulled my blan­ket around my legs and feet. Jerk­Brain piped up, “It’s July, you idiot. It’s not cold. You shouldn’t be cold.”

In defi­ance, I pulled my thin sweater on as well, slow­ly but­ton­ing the but­tons, pulling the sleeves around my wrists, sink­ing into my chair and heav­ing a sigh. The anx­i­ety med­i­cine was kick­ing in. JerkBrain’s voice was weak­er and weak­er, and I was flood­ed with exhaus­tion and relief.

These are such small things. Such lit­tle vic­to­ries. What right have I to cel­e­brate them?

The same right I have to cel­e­brate the vic­to­ries of all of my friends and fam­i­ly who deal with chron­ic ill­ness­es, phys­i­cal and men­tal. Small vic­to­ries are vic­to­ries. Med­ica­tion that allows me to escape the nev­er-end­ing cycle of pan­ic is use­ful. Wrap­ping myself in soft, warm cloth is calm­ing and sooth­ing. Touch­ing my skin and putting make­up on with gen­tle, lov­ing hands is cru­cial on days where I strug­gle to love myself. Such a short amount of time of my day, and yet now I am calm. I can think. I am okay.

Cel­e­brate the lit­tle vic­to­ries. Always, cel­e­brate the lit­tle vic­to­ries.

Posted in Fat Girl,
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