Mental Health, Poetry

Irrational Reptile

With tough, leathery skin,
it’s a wonder she moves without notice.

Yet she skulks and slithers
throughout the mind,

the soul,

the psyche

leaving a trail of bad decisions in the name of self-preservation

Seeking only comfort and survival
not peace or progress

After years of hiding in the shadows,
she is an expert at skirting around the edges,
dropping pebbles here,
rolling beads of water down there,
until they gather in a puddle,
pushing behind the eyes
pulsating in the inner ear
an ache in the chest
an unease in the soul

Don’t trust this,
she says.
Run the other way,
she says.
And if you won’t listen,
she whispers ways to sabotage

All so softly that you don’t even question that her voice isn’t your own.

Identity, Living, May is Mental Health Month, Mental Health, parenting

Christine Koh: Minimalist You: Self-Care Is Not Selfish

Christine Koh: Minimalist You: Self-Care Is Not Selfish.

My last post is a perfect segue to this, no?  Ha!

Simply put, I suck at self-care.  Obviously (if you read yesterday’s post!).

But I can’t function without it – which is why I struggle with mothering a lot.

Does that make me a failure as a mother or a person because I need it?

Last month, my youngest was sick.  While her two older sisters were at school, she slept in bed.  I wrote the whole time.  I felt so alive, so rejuvenated.  I had time to formulate thoughts, solutions, ideas for my writing, to move beyond the small task at hand. How excited I got and how invigorated I felt to face life and motherhood after that.

But that was tempered with a guilt.  Why couldn’t I find joy in my children even without such creative time?

How do we care for ourselves when we don’t feel worthy of it?

Or when we don’t even have the energy for it?  When depression drags you down so much that even getting out of bed takes too much energy, let alone getting dolled up and entering the world.

It truly is a vicious cycle.

But read this article and follow some or all of its tips.  Self-care is worth it, whether we believe it – or in ourselves – or not.  And if we don’t, it’s been proven that faking a smile actually lifts one’s spirits so fake that you enjoy that yoga class and maybe one day you will. (Quoth the reverend who needs to review the Ten Commandments 😉 )