(My) Amended New Years Resolutions for Chronic Illness
I originally posted this last year but I made some changes for the new year.
1. Be more accepting of myself- While I’ve wouldn’t say I have low self esteem (I know I’m awesome) I tend to be my harshest critic. I tend to be the one thinking I should be doing and accomplishing more. I judge myself for being too lazy or not living up to certain standards. I really need to give myself a break once and a while and be happy with what I have accomplished.
2. Suppress any violent feelings toward people expressing the following phrases:*
“Shouldn’t you be better now? You’re probably just thinking too negatively.” Ah yes, if only my body would listen to specific people’s time tables then all my problems would be solved. I would also love if the power of positive thinking were the magic cure some doctors and critics like to pretend it is. Unfortunately it isn’t that magical, people do occasionally die after all and I doubt positive thinking would have prevented that. Why is it that so many people are convinced chronic illness can be cured by positive thinking but never manage to think the same about their own problems?
“You don’t have a job, what do you do all day?” Wouldn’t you like to know.
“If you just exercise more you would feel better. Your health problems would go away if you lost a little weight” I usually get the best of these people when I tell them I go on the treadmill every day. Then I ask often they exercise. It’s amazing how fast they shut up. Not to mention that people can’t tell the difference between weight as a cause and weight as an effect. Some people have health problems related to their weight and some people have weight caused by the health problems. Many skinny (and healthy) people like to live in their perfect judgmental bubble where they can pretend they are better then everyone else. I hope they never have reason to be brought out of that bubble.
“I wish I could lay around the house all day.” Because, yeah sure, that’s what I do. I have a three year old and a six year old and I’m practically disabled, but sure, I lay around the house all day. No one who ever met my son would say this to me. Whenever I sit down for a period of time it’s almost guaranteed he will get into something. Most notably the time when he poured water into the toaster while it was on. Needless to say I have to be constantly vigilant which doesn’t allow for a lot of rest.
“I wish I could get by with no income, I HAVE to have a job.” Um, yeah, I have to have a job too, but I can’t physically work and that’s why you won’t see me at the nail salon or carrying around my Starbucks coffee or dressing fashionably or taking a vacation five times a year.
Plus, people think they want to lay around all day, but believe you don’t, it’s not that fun. Being physically unable to move is overrated.
* Come to think about it, I already do suppress my violent feelings toward these people, I just I’ll make a goal to continue it.
3. Don’t let my desire for cleanliness over weigh more important things- I hate dirt and I hate clutter, it bothers me when my house is in disarray. Sometimes I spend too much time fretting and obsessing about it when I should be playing with my kids or helping a friend. I only have so much energy, and when it comes down to it there are more important things than clutter. I need to remember a spotless house is not the most important thing in the world.
4. Find something to be joyful about every day, no matter how awful I’m feeling. This is probably the most important one, and therefore is sarcasm free. A few weeks ago I had a million things to do, but it was a beautiful day so I decided to ignore the to do list and the pain and grumpiness and instead spent my morning playing outside with my son. I need to do things like that more often.