I have been a little quiet on the blogging front recently thanks to a certain something called ‘M.E.’ Having recently been diagnosed with this condition, I’ve spent a few months coming to terms with it and searching for a silver lining that must surely be surrounding this particularly bothersome little cloud.
Initially I was determined that it wouldn’t affect my business or my life, and ploughed on regardless. I then began to realise that this ‘self-care’ lark actually matters.
The downside of my new life is that it has become socially limited – I love to talk – boy can I talk – but when you’re too tired to leave the house this isn’t an option. Work has always been a source of self-esteem to me, and when I realised I had to cut that back too, I felt lost.
It seemed as though I needed to discover a new identity, and I found this really exciting (the ‘upside’). M.E. has taught me that my body is an intricately designed, hard-working machine that I now love and appreciate every day. At the age of 37, M.E. has banished 20+ years’ of painfully negative body image. In its place, I am thoroughly enjoying digging out clothes I haven’t worn for years, as well as revealing arms and legs that haven’t seen the light of day in nearly 10 years!
Just 6 months ago I (unwillingly) attended a makeover day. I barely glanced at the ‘after’ photos before snapping the laptop shut in tears, and hiding the CD away. Today I have published one of those photos to the world (eeek!) as an accompaniament to this blog.
I now see food as fuel, not a guilt-ridden minefield to be navigated day in, day out. On the rare day that I have enough precious energy to walk out with the dog, I revel in the freedom, not curse it as ‘another chore.’
I’ve also discovered meditation and I think I’m addicted! All those wellbeing techniques that I read about for years, intending to implement, have finally come to fruition as part of the healing process.
Although this is going to be a long and sometimes difficult journey, I am determined to focus on the silver lining, and not the black cloud.