Note to self – read it then read it again.
Destroy the toxic idea that you’re not sick enough. Remind yourself that this is the voice of your illness talking. It’s the voice of internalized societal stigma. The voice of fear and self-doubt. It’s the little devil on your shoulder preventing you from moving forward – keeping you stuck in familiar discomfort and discontentment. Tell that voice to “eff right off”.
There will never be a “sick enough”. The benchmark doesn’t exist. If you’re anything but truly happy, you’re sick enough. If you’re anything but truly free you are sick enough.
It’s your life, you don’t have to live it to prove anything to anyone, least of all to your disease. It’s your life and it’s happening to you NOW. Don’t waste any more of it denying yourself living. Happiness is ready for you at this moment. Not five pounds, or two years down the road. Turn your shame into pride. Do it for one day being able to say that overcoming your demons, not living with them, was the greatest thing you could have done.
“Shame corrodes the part of us that believes we are capable of change”.
You don’t have to “prove” your suffering to be worthy of something better.
You already are.
You don’t have to prolong your struggles in order to deserve help.
You already do.
You do not have to be at your worst to seek help. You do not have to be worse than anyone else to ask for help. You are not entitled for desiring more. You are not greedy, or selfish, or attention-seeking. You deserve more. You did the day you were born a complete, flawed, imperfect, human being. Your recovery will always be worthwhile. Overcoming your pain will always be admirable, no matter how or how long you hurt.
Who are you trying to prove anything to anyways? No cancer patient says they haven’t been sick enough to try therapy yet. No influenza patient says they haven’t struggled enough to make their recovery worthwhile. This is insecurity talking.
Self-doubt tells you you’re not worth improvement if you’re anything less than miserable.
Insecurity tells you it’s not worth investing time in yourself.
Your sickness awaits external validation but even if it comes it won’t be enough. It will never be enough. The only acceptance you need is from yourself.
The journey to wellness asks more of you. It asks the real You to be present. It asks that you listen to them, and that you turn inwards. You don’t have to wholehearted believe you deserve more to go for it. Even if you have a small desire for something different – the smallest itch to exist somewhere beyond where your illness has kept you stuck, take the first step.
It’s comfortable to stay in competition. It’s familiar to feed the continual cycle of self-doubt, but even so – that’s not proving anything either. Prove to yourself that you don’t need your crutches anymore. Prove to yourself that you’ve held on for so long because there was more waiting for you. Prove to yourself that you can let go. You can be afraid and still be strong. You can be unsure of the way but still move forward.
Strength can come out of your struggle, but only if you pursue it. There is no beauty in suffering. The beauty only comes from the overcoming of it, and the triumph is no more beautiful or heroic the longer (or shorter) you hurt. Pain is human. Pain is unavoidable but suffering is a choice. How you react to pain is. You do not deserve it. You do not have to degrade yourself to smallness to be worthy of taking up space.
Let’s be real, being sick does not feel good. It’s scary to leave what you know behind. It’s hard to imagine something you may not know exists, but you will feel better to feel better – it’s human nature. It’s not so much blind trust, it’s biology. It’s being a part of nature. Your sickness serves a purpose. Find out what it is and address it. You don’t need to be sick to avoid coping. There are better ways. You deserve to use them and you are capable of doing so. You identity is not defined by how you cope with situations. You identity is defined by you. The You that you are trying to uncover by listening to what your body and mind really need. Finding better coping mechanisms allows you to find you.
Take control back from your illness. Find your power.
The goal is healing. It doesn’t matter if you get there early or late. The process of healing is where the learning begins. Where the magic happens. Not in suffering. Not in the pain. You have so much to learn. You have magic inside of you. No one is so broken that there’s no hope of improvement. Our maladaptations have been learned. We can unlearn them. We can un-socialize the socializing we have been exposed to. Yes it might take adjustment, the kind that might conflict with your temperament but that’s the beauty of humankind. We can grow and grow and never be overgrown. We can learn and try and fail and never be done learning. We have an endless capacity for love and for life. You have an endless capacity for love and for life. Provided you don’t allow your pain to limit it.
It’s not about proving anything. It’s about giving yourself what you need – what you deserve and always have deserved.
You don’t earn healing.