I wanted to take a moment and share a piece of my story with you. I have been working with Nicole for the last 3 years as a fitness coach and we opened Inspired Athletic Movement gym together a little over a year ago. I hope you can either relate or reflect or even gain some insight on your own well-being based on my journey. For the last 7 years I have had an array of health issues. Without going into the details, I can tell you that I definitely spent time in the beginning frequently questioning "WHY ME?!" and feeling pretty angry about my new limitations. Fast forward 7 years and I feel I am exactly where I am supposed to be. "Be where you are. Not where you should be." Where SHOULD we be exactly anyways? Life has many ups and downs that come and go, and what we SHOULD do is take care of ourselves the best we can in each moment and continue to put one intentional foot in front of the other. That's what leads to happiness and successes- the continued and intentional trying and reminding ourselves of the importance of wanting to move forward. Each step forward in the direction we are aiming for is not only liberating but feels so rewarding!
There are days still when I feel sick, overwhelmed, achy or tired but I have made a choice, even on those days, to do and be my best version of me. The best version of me can look different and that's OK too. On the harder days, that may mean brushing my hair and trying my best to smile, while I make sure to hold myself accountable to reaching out for support when I need it. This could look like a walk with my dog, meeting a friend for a low key workout, reading an inspiring book, a phone call with a good friend, or a therapy session. It's these little things, that feel good, that remind me that life (even on the hard days) is incredibly wonderful and feeling my best is worth fighting for... and sometimes it does feel like a very uphill battle but I must choose to face it head on. My happiness is up to me!
The harder times do pass and become better times and even great times, and that cycle continues- that's life! I believe that having a chronic illness or having an ill loved one shines light on the ups and downs even more so. It is our individual duty to take care of ourselves the best we can. That is how we thrive. Support from my doctors, therapist, family and friends plays a big role for me in my self-care. Feeling sick can become a large burden to carry alone and can quickly and easily weigh you down into depression and limited self-care.
I no longer have to make a decision each day to take care of myself. It has over time become my norm and I am grateful for that. Even on the very hard days, I am well aware of how much better I'll feel if I choose self-care (writing in my journal, movement, reaching out to someone in my support network, etc). My passion is to help others in similar situations realize their potential and ability of self-care and the grave importance of it. Your best and your self-care plan are uniquely yours- unique to your body and your needs. It's so special how we can not only create but discover and work towards our best selves; most of us are much greater, stronger and more capable than we believe or even know possible!
There is no reason to feel alone and singled out when chronically ill.
You have many strong hands wanting to help push and lift you up. It may start off feeling impossible, but you can achieve happiness, success and your well-being through one intentional baby step at a time. You, like me, are way more than chronically ill!
All my best, Erica