What do you do when you have a REALLY bad day? You wake up in the morning and realize whatever you had planned, isn’t going to happen. Or maybe it hits you after your day has already started and wham! you have to leave work or the store or stop an activity with a loved one and head right back to bed. It is beyond frustrating, it is a disappointment that brings heart-breaking sadness to your soul.
Bad days/weeks for me result in having to spend that time in bed. Lying in bed gives my mind way too much to think. In the beginning, I can do a pretty decent job keeping my thoughts positive and encouraging. But as my time in bed drags on, my thoughts start turning from self encouragement to more negative and anxiety provoking, and if I am not careful I can get to a place where it will make my physical recovery just that much more difficult.
It is during these times that negative self-talk tends to flare up. Phrases like………Not again! Oh no, it this going to start happening more often? Is this a new symptom that may become permanent? How long is this episode going to last? Damn, I hate living like this! What did I do to make this happen? Who am I going to disappoint this time? If I cancel again, is s/he is going to believe me? Is this my new normal? Should I try……..(put any word in the English language here and I have probably thought it). Negative and fearful self-talk can cause anxiety and NO ONE with a chronic illness needs anymore of that!
So, we need to learn to be kind to ourselves, especially on these miserable days. We need to give ourselves permission to feel ill. To love ourselves enough to realize we did not ask for this hand we were dealt, and we didn’t do anything to create it, except to be alive in this world. We need to truly believe that none of this crap is our fault and it is out of our control. IF we had control over our illnesses, we would all be living our lives symptom-free, experiencing only good days and LOVING our lives as no (always been healthy) person could. We must learn to love our self enough to do what needs to be done to heal in the moment, so we can get up and try again.
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