Beyond the Bath Bomb: the "Ugly" Side of Self Care

Hey there friends,

Self care is something we see a lot more these days. Posts of people getting their nails done, lighting candles and doing facemasks and that's awesome! I am loving that there is a growing amount of people taking care of themselves and understanding that in order to really be there for the rest of the world, we have to show up for ourselves first. Most of the time when I talk to someone they are tired because they are due for a reset and some extra love. While I encourage self care in whatever form it takes for each individual, I think it is important to acknowledge the less glamorous side of it. The real deal stuff that is a crucial foundation for healing/recovery.

I'm talking about the hard stuff. The weekly schedule filled with doctor/ therapy appointments, the habit trackers that remind you to eat and drink water, and the feeling you get when you have a good day and then you start crying because it's the first time you've felt that in a long time. Those are not beautiful to look at but are a mandatory balance to the other ways we take care of ourselves. I don't think that hard self care is better but I do think it goes unrecognized. Sometimes when I'm on social media I get really frustrated because I've seen a million bath bomb pictures and think to myself "damn, my self care must be way off track because it doesn't look like that". It's a really sneaky idea that I fed myself recently. Actually most times I don't even know why I feel that way. I am on Instagram pretty much every day because it's my fave social media platform to connect with ya'll!! In reality I think it can give me the best and worst feelings. On one hand I get to see and interact with all of my amazing readers and followers an on the other hand it makes me feel less than. I see other people's recovery stories or healing and I start to feel gross about where I'm at. That's when I know I need to put my phone away for a bit. Truth be told it isn't that easy and I am not always that aware. Anywho, that was a bit of a rant and background ramble.

What happened was, not too long ago I started thinking about all of the aspects of my self care routine that I have let fall back. I thought about how I was so on top of it and had my foundation and then some built really nicely. I started telling myself "well you need to be drinking your celery juice and you need to go to yoga more, meditate more, you need to get out and stop being so lazy". Yes. I went from pep talk to criticizing myself for not doing any of the things I deemed as crucial. The thing is talking about it and getting mad at myself for it didn't make me want to pick up my yoga mat and get back to it. In fact I think I made it worse. All the ways I told myself that I was "lazy" and "unmotivated" really sunk in and I spent even more time in bed. I felt depressed. It showed up differently though. It was like a heavy feeling in my body and I was so in my head about every detail of my life. It felt like a lot of swirling thought loops with a light dusting of sadness. Bleh. Near the end of that I realized that I wasn't eating as much. It felt as though there wasn't enough energy in my body to even fuel it. Eating felt like an inconvenience to my thinking process. Cue the worry of having an eating disorder resurface. That was an intense fear and I knew then that I had to tell my people so I could get the support necessary. That was an act of self care. It was a non negotiable gesture for me and it took a lot to reach out and I did it. I celebrated that in my mind for at least two days because although it may seem small, it was a big thing. So yes, my lovely palace of self care bricks was being knocked down and yea I am still working on not getting mad at myself for letting things slip and then getting mad at myself for getting mad at myself. What can I say?! I have the ability to be both on the outside and on the inside of these things and sometimes it causes more hurt than help. Even though I am in and out of these things, doing a check on my self care habits has brought me back to my foundation. The things that aren't just nice to do for myself but the ones that need to get done so I can continue functioning.

Maybe this whole thing is about realness, the unsexy truth about recovery/healing which could use more attention in my opinion. I think things like this could be a little more out there and less of a hidden default part of the process so that other people, know they aren't the only ones doing "ugly" self care. All of our journey's have different requirements from us and it's ok if yours is a little messy. The important part is that you are doing something for yourself regardless of what that may look like. I have a couple friends who have asked me for tips of taking care of themselves and lists of ways to keep up their positivity and that feels incredible! However, there are times when I slip up, I forget and I people please. I am so very human in that way and I will always say that on here. If you feel like you have made a million appointments this week, you have a reminder on your phone that tells you to drink water, maybe your mom calls you every day to check in or you have been confronting an uncomfortable situation plus so many more things. If any of those are you then you are actively working on your health and I think that's amazing. I love you and you are worthy!!!

Love and Light,

Sahara