I get tired just thinking about self-care! And I don’t even have kids or a spouse to take up my time. I thought I would never say this, but at my age (more than 50 – okay, more than 55) I have more self-care than I ever anticipated. I am not going to get into the details except to say that self-care is every day. If I miss one day, that might not be so bad, but if I miss more than that I could end up with cracked heels or inflammation of some joints. As I was thinking about self-care, it occurred to me that taking medication and vitamins and minerals is self-care. Actually, eating is self-care! As it gets the juices flowing, exercise is also self-care.
I think one reason self-care is so challenging for me is that I was not raised to think about it. Growing up, it was about getting a good job – period! Another reason I feel challenged is that it feels like work. I have to do it. I have to go to work. I have to pay the bills, etc.
The last decade or so I have become more and more aware of self-care. Sometimes you don’t have a choice when it comes to medication and food, but ultimately our quality of life depends on how we take care of ourselves. I have decided that in my later years I want quality of life. There is only one way to do that and it is self-care. So, I am making an attitude adjustment and looking at self-care as longevity and quality of life rather than work. I choose to do it! I will even start to enjoy it by the grace of God.
Finally, many people would not consider spiritual care as part of self-care, but it is. I walk in the Jesus Way so in part I worship on Sunday. I am Nehiyaw/Métis on my mother’s side and in response to my Cree DNA I smudge at home most days plus participate in the ceremony of Sweat Lodge. On my dad’s side, I believe I have Jewish roots. In response to that DNA I also worship on the true Sabbath, Saturday. All this spiritually-related activity helps me stay motivated to do some things that don’t feel good at the moment and help keep me focussed on what really matters in life – to be the kind of person Creator designed me to be.
Sharon lives in Boyle Street.