Deuteronomy 32:10 - In a desert land he found him, in a barren and howling waste. He shielded him and cared for him; he guarded him as the apple of his eye.
We feel guilty about too many things.
Often that guilt revolves around our health. Whether it be chronic pain or an illness guilt can fall on us when most of our day is centered around taking care of ourselves. It is not a bad thing to do things that can lift pain off our body. But sometimes we still feel guilty.
Guilty. Guilty. Guilty.
We try to plea our case and explain that it’s not our fault that we can’t do more. But the gavel comes down in the hands of the judge as he pronounces the verdict.
Failure. Cry baby. Lazy. And the list goes on.
We do cry.
We do feel like a failure.
We do feel lazy.
But it’s not our fault that we have a chronic health condition. And sometimes our lives are simply out of our control.
Yet, remember: We are not God. The world doesn’t revolve around us. Not everything we do is wrong. We are capable of winning many battles even if no one sees them.
Sometimes, though, when we are labeled with a chronic condition it can often feel like somehow it’s our fault. Somewhere along the way we’re being punished for what we’ve done, or better put, what we haven’t done.
Listen to me, we do work and work hard. We aren’t lazy. It just takes more effort and time for us to get something done than it does for a healthy person. And sometimes, all we have strength for is just to get through the day taking care of ourselves. That’s not a bad thing.
It takes great courage for us to get out of bed each morning. We don’t want to face another day in sickness and pain. But still somehow we ease ourselves out of bed and move into our day.
If any of what I’m writing applies to you then listen carefully:
So if taking care of ourselves is our job, are there things we can do to take care of ourselves that we might be neglecting? Tinybuddha.com in their article, “45 Simple Self-care Practices for a Healthy Mind, Body, and Soul,” provides ideas to take care of yourself that addresses the mind, body and soul. Some of their suggestions include realizing self-care isn’t a one-time deal, go cloud watching and let yourself relax, get fifteen minutes of sun, and splurge a little by buying a small luxury as a way of valuing yourself.
Treating yourself kindly isn’t just something that another person came up with. God values you as the apple of his eye. You’re the center of his focus and love, and as such he will plant seeds of kindness into your very being. Let his love show you the way to stop feeling guilty for taking care of yourself, and let the self-care begin.
Karen Dalske is a freelance writer, public speaker, is active in her church and writes her blogs out of her own experiences of pain, illness and loss.