Simple Thoughts on Self-Care

I’m here,still sober & kickin’ on this quiet October 1st. It’s getting chilly up here in the North, though we’re due to have an unseasonably warm burst of air midweek. I can’t say I’m ready for winter to make her impending return.

My last year of school is in full swing. I am settled in nicely at my internship, where I’m working among a full team of licensed professionals. I’m begrudgingly trudging my way through a research methods class, holding onto the knowledge that the end really is near. I’m almost there. The end is so close I can taste it. I feel terrified and excited and a little fraudulent, like someone let me in the therapy room and doesn’t know how unqualified I feel (even if, realistically, that’s not the case). At any rate, I’m really, truly almost there. 7 months and counting.

I saw my own therapist tonight. We talked about school, how I feel more at ease with things this year as compared to last, and my hopes looking forward. At one point, we talked about self-care. He asked me what I do for my self-care, to which I replied the usual: working out, trying to sleep well, eating healthfully, meditation, writing. I made note that despite doing all of those things, I’ve had a persistent, long-term tenseness in my body that is causing me a lot of pain, particularly in my neck and shoulders. At its worst, my head feels too heavy for my neck to support; at best, I am mildly uncomfortable, scrunched in my shoulders and neck. It has been like this for months, maybe even a year, and nothing I do physically seems to make it better.

To this, my therapist suggested incorporating self-care that allows me to be cared for by someone else. Of course, therapy is one of those areas, but he suggested giving myself permission to see a chiropractor or massage therapist (or both) more regularly. It makes sense–so much of my self-care is self-driven and solitary. I have social supports, but they cannot ease my aching muscles or readjust my painful spine. I am in no way interested in pain medications or other forms of sedation–like booze–to calm this pain. I’ve pretty much resigned myself to living with it, finding bits of relief where and when I can.

But maybe he’s right. Maybe there’s something more I’m missing–more than social connection, mindfulness, or working out, maybe I need to do some exploration into physical healing services to help me re-learn how to carry my body without experiencing so much pain.

As I’ve got no idea where to start other than the chiropractor’s office, I am going to break my own rule of not fishing for comments and ask: what works for you, dear reader? What kinds of physical healing services have you used and loved–or maybe you tried something and thought it was a load of crap? I’m really looking for some relief. Not a cure-all, but something that might help even a little. My mind is open to your thoughts & suggestions.

Thanks, y’all.

❤ Em

10 thoughts on “Simple Thoughts on Self-Care

  1. Ainsobriety says:

    I get regular massages and I see an osteopath. I would say the osteo is the best body worker I have ever found.

    I also see an Ayurvedic doctor. It is an interesting and personal approach to health.

    I take regular, long Epsom salt bubble baths.

    And we got some pets. The pets require care, but just having them makes me happy.


    Liked by 1 person

  2. revita max says:

    Thank you for writing this blog post, firstly, congrats, you’re almost out of school. Secondly, I really do believe you should try massage therapy, as your therapist and the comments have said, massages are insanely helpful if you’re looking for therapy that is both relaxing and safe. I hope you consider massage therapy and have a nice day!

    Liked by 1 person

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