Bipolar Disorder, Everyday Life, Uncategorized

Taking a Time Out: Self-Care

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Yesterday I posted about a number of things that a person can do to help improve their lives in the blog Living with Bipolar: Tools for Success . Some of the items included yoga, exercising, hobbies, meditation and mindfulness classes.  However, I wanted to bring awareness to a reality that hit me in the face like a large stick yesterday.  And that would be what happens when you are purely exhausted and unable to complete these really good for you activities.  The times when you just need to stay home and rest.

Yesterday was a busy day for me.  A very good day, but a happening day.  It started off with an awesome coffee date with a friend of mine.  Simply catching up and sipping coffee was a wonderful way to start the day and I am so happy that we were able to chisel out the time in both of our busy schedules and spend a little bit of time together.

I am Irish and Polish with super fair, freckly skin. For this reason, I see the dermatologist quite often, as well as the fact that I have had a number of questionable moles removed.  I had my six month visit yesterday and it was uneventful, which was a pleasant surprise.

Post dermatology appointment, I grabbed my main squeeze a coffee and a snacky doodle because I was directly across the street from his office and I love to make an excuse to see him during the day.  It was quite a treat, and my positive for the day to see him mid-day before I had to rush to my next appointment.

My fourth appointment of the day was my weekly therapy appointment.  Although only an hour, we covered an enormous amount of information as much has happened over the last week.  I discussed how I have been working on the decluttering.  In addition I babbled about how freeing it was to expand on the “reward” deep seeded issue and how identifying that this was the motivation behind a lot of my addictive behaviors allowed me to break habits which was a reward in itself. Summing up the appointment, we set goals for the following week and I was given a number of affirmations for the hard work that I was able to achieve.

I left that appointment and headed to pick up my hormones from the compound pharmacy, gleefully picked up my new hormones I should say, excited to be back on a more fitting dose.  This was a quick stop and then I headed to the office.  I sat down at my desk and took a deep breath.  I had a time sensitive project I needed to wrap up and I completed it with ease.

Finally I was able to take some time and eat my lunch, chat with a few friends while on my lunch break, and then I was back to working with a laundry list of items to complete.  Due to being busy, before I knew it, the end of the day had arrived and it was time to get the kids.

Upon arriving home, the lethargy that I was feeling increased exponentially. I was having trouble thinking clearly and speaking in full sentences.  There was some leftover coffee in the pot from the morning and I treated myself to a half cup.  It wasn’t much but it did help a little bit.  However, I was stuck with a dilemma.  I had class tonight (Mindfulness) and I needed to decide if I was going as I would need to eat before I left and I was quickly running out of time.

It seems like I never want to go to class.  It takes close to 30 minutes to get to the location where the class is held and the class is 2.5 hours long.  I want to be home with my family and in my beloved bathrobe.  But once I am there, in class, for 30 minutes, I get settled and I realize that I am thankful that I made myself go and that I am where I am supposed to be.  I always get a lot out of class and I know that my time was well spent.  I also know that my family is more than fine without me.  Plus, I am taking care of me, and in order for me to take care of others, I first have to take care of myself.

However, yes there is a but, last night was different.  I was feeling so run down, I was worried about driving.  I had a very important meeting today that I needed to be on point for and I knew that I needed to rest.  Attending the course may have helped me, but it may have been too much.  So, I needed to make a decision about what was best for me.  I chose to stay home.

I feel that it is important to use a number of different venues to help care take ourselves. But, I also feel that at times it is an act of self-care to say no and just be still, to stay home and be calm, to rest and be quiet.  Today I am feeling much improved.  I am still a little tired, but nothing compared to how I felt yesterday.  I am learning that I struggle after a very busy day, and that spacing out errands and appointments works better for me.

Each day I learn something new.  I learn more about me and what I can and can’t handle.  I learn when I can say yes and when I can say no.  I am proud that last night I chose to say no, but it was done to take care of me.

2 thoughts on “Taking a Time Out: Self-Care”

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