This might sound weird, but I am not very gentle with myself. I push myself to the extreme kind of all of the time. My mom gets really mad when, every time I show up on her doorstep, I have bags under my eyes and greasy hair. “You’re doing it again. You’re burning the candle at both ends.” I obviously roll my bloodshot eyes and go straight for her wine stash in the basement, “Mom, I’m fine.”
I am one of those people that looks in the mirror and sees a perpetually unfinished project. I see a pile of laundry half-folded, but mostly just a ball of wrinkledness. I see a meal that is prepped but not cooked. I feel the pressure of conversations that are awaiting initiation, or of a whopping credit card bill that is getting impatient with me. I’m opting to ignore the 10 pounds that I’d be stoked to find out have miraculously disappeared from my thighs, and I really need to go to the dentist. I’m also still missing my Patagonia vest, is it at work? I need to find that.
I get pissed at myself when reality reminds me that I am not, in fact, a magical wizard that can snap her fingers and have everything instantly figured out in her world. I bust in and out of my apartment like Kramer – frazzled and boiling over, but laughing at the irony of my exhaustion. It’s cute, but like…it’s not sustainable. Can’t all of my friendships and relationships just be in ship shape while I kill it at work, am dressed to the nine’s, am in killer shape, and, most importantly, my diabetes supplies is so organized it would make every bitch on Pinterest squirm?
I have struggled with prioritization my entire life. I am such a sucker for anything that is “fun” and “easy”…and I have a really hard time with the word “no.” I am literally like a moth when an outdoor light gets turned on. Like, “Hi, here I come! I have no control over my mind or body right now…what’s up, you hot, bright thing!” I know that I have things that need to get done, and they certainly do get done…eventually. But if any opportunity to be distracted by laughter or an engagement with a lack of seriousness arises, I have a tendency to sign-up immediately regardless of what’s on my plate.
Diabetes is the anti-everything I just described. It takes an insane amount of discipline and planning and research and discipline and … did I mention discipline? It’s so intimidating that I cower at the thought of truly “doing diabetes right.” I’ll go on the interwebs, Google something, see the results and go, “Zoinks! This is too hard, these people know a lot more than me and I don’t really know if I feel like learning right now. Also, now I feel like I suck, because, clearly, other people are doing a better job than me.” Then guess what happens? I get sad. I get down on myself. And I get mad because I just perpetuated the cycle of this god damned unfinished project. Like, can’t I just nail this one down? I’m really trying, here! I got a new Endo like a big girl, I check my blood sugar like, 6 times a day, and I run many miles many times a week. Can’t that just be enough?
Downward spiral, engage!
Earlier today, I was reading one of my favorite diabetes blogs (I only have a few re: statement above that they all scare the shit out me so I avoid them like the T in August during a thunderstorm.) I enjoy this blog, though, because the author is hilarious. She also swears on the Internet, which is my favorite activity in the whole wide world. She is very real, and she is so forgiving of herself. She is her toughest critic, but also allows herself to acknowledge her efforts and that they, though maybe not perfect, are enough. After reading this teeny tiny, uber simple post. I went, “Oh.”
I had a moment where I said to myself what I say to people when they’re getting fiesty with me for no reason. “Yo, be easy.” I beat the crap out of myself when I fall short of where I want to be. Or when I make a mountain out of a mole hill. Or for missing an opportunity. But one thing I don’t do is appreciate the efforts that I am making. And though there is probably always going to be room for improvement, it is imperative that I take time to celebrate little victories, progress, or even just say, “God dammit, kiddo, you’re doing your best, what the hell else are you supposed to do.” And for that, Kerri from Sixuntilme, I thank you.