I am trying to take care of myself, in the same way that I take care of others. I am trying to love myself, in the same way that I love others. I am trying to believe in, and be be proud of myself, in the same way that I believe in and am proud of others.
It is so easy for me to applaud another, or soothe another, or comfort another. It is so easy for me to look at another person and understand every reason why they are how they are. It is so easy for me to raise my hand to stem their worries, fears, and doubts.
But when I look at myself, I find it difficult. It can be so hard to function. Sometimes it’s cos I’m ill. Sometimes it’s cos I’m depressed. And sometimes I just really don’t have time to care for myself. I can be for other people what they cannot be for themselves, but I cannot be what I need. I spend my days caring and loving others, and yet, when I come home, I have none left for myself.
Which is why I have to say thank you. There are so many people in my life who care so much for me when I cannot care for myself. They are everything to me that I try to be to everyone else. It is because of them that I am still here. I remember saying angrily to my other half once that if I didn’t care so much for other people, then I would have ended it years ago; I would have given in to the dark thoughts and done what, sometimes, I ache to do. I was mad at them for stopping me, subconsciously. I was angry that because of them, I never gave in. I was fuming that because I knew they cared so much for me, I couldn’t hurt them by hurting me. I used to hate it. I wanted them to stop caring, I wanted them to stop making me care.
But now I know it is my strength. I know that no matter how little I care on my end, I can trust in them to care for me. I can trust their knowledge that it will be okay. Even when I believe in nothing, I can believe in them. I don’t always accept it, and god knows a lot of the time I don’t understand why they would want to care, but I am learning to draw on those people to keep myself together. Through their love and care, I am learning to be for myself what I try to be for others.
So don’t stop caring. Even when someone throws it back in your face, don’t stop caring for them. Believe in them so that they have something to lean on when times get dark. A little bit of care goes a long way. Whether that’s for someone you’ve known all your life, or for someone you’ve interacted with across the internet, don’t stop caring. Be kind in your words, and stand with those who need it. Offer a hand, a smile, a hug. Offer a quiet place to sit. Offer nothing but a shoulder to cry on and safe arms to hide in. If you do not know what to do, just care.
So I’m trying to learn how to look after myself, and not be hard on myself. I’m trying to learn to rest, and stay well, and applaud the little things. I’m trying to fall in love with who I am. And to all of you who care while I forget to, thank you. You are the light.
Until next time, thank you.