Physio for the Ego

I had another night of being sick and try as I might I can see no reason. I have had really bad stomach pains for the past couple of days, when you have a lot of spasms as normal it is often hard for me to separate out what is causing what. When they started I realised that I should have taken my stomach meds even though the Doctor said not to until I saw the specialist, I hadn’t been to the loo for 4 days. Meds taken I waited and woke up conveniently at 11pm needing to get to the loo fast, I don’t do fast well. When I woke I felt at the same time as though I was going to be sick but it settled and I returned to my bed thinking that was the end of it, wrong, I was up 3 times more to be sick. This all happened on Monday night, yesterday I felt better as in no longer wanting to be sick, but as the day went on it came back even though I had taken the my sickness meds and I was aware of something else, something that has been going on for a while and that was I was craving cold, not room temperature but cold drinks and foods, looking back that has been happening for a few months. I don’t feel thirsty or hungry what I want is ice cold things in my stomach, I just hadn’t thought about it. So here we are on Wednesday morning and I still have spasm/cramp pain in my lower abdomen and sharp in the upper, even with the cold stuff I keep adding to it. I haven’t actually eaten a lot nor am I going to until it settles and I have decided I have to call the Nurses tomorrow morning if there is no change.

Today though is going to be about me! I haven’t dyed my hair for about 3 months, Adam usually helps me but I want to try myself, I know it is probably a silly thing to do without him here but I want to and I am going to. Silly things that other take as normal daily/weekly or monthly activities are not easy to deal with but sometimes I feel I have to challenge myself and see how I manage. I feel that setting challenges are important to me, sitting back and saying I can’t do it is just not acceptable unless I have tried it, or something similar recently. My challenges are normally something simple and something that if it goes wrong isn’t likely to cause me major issues, as in climbing a ladder is a no no, the outcome would probably be broken bones, dying my hair isn’t going to kill me.

Although my hair is part of my self-image that all would understand, these challenges are about much bigger self-image situations. I know I am disabled but I know there is a huge range of conditions with in that umbrella word, and like anyone my self-image is important. Looking in the mirror is one thing, feeling good about myself is another, and it is the feeling good aspect that is important to all, disabled or not. When you let life tick over, accepting 100% everything that happens to you, then you coast, and when you coast, well your self-image is slowly damaged. I believe that it is more important now for me to be happy with myself than ever before. Before I had work and work colleges, people I saw daily and to whom my expertise was important, as I enabled them to do their jobs and earn money, sometimes they even thanked me for it. I have found a wonderful network of people across blog-land and Twitter who have made my life better in so many ways, but I can’t see their faces or read their body language, and that is often the greatest way to know how someone really thinks about you.

Now I have just myself and Adam who can fill that roll, like all husbands sometimes he will say something about what I have done or how I look, but my self-image has to now be lifted mainly by myself. If you saw no one for 6 months, how do you think by the end of that 6 months you would look like and feel? I suspect that like me, you would stop worrying about your appearance so much. When I became housebound I had just one good hand, so hair and make-up couldn’t be done and I stopped caring, I didn’t start until the last few months to do anything about it and I feel so much better that I now know it is important. I stopped pushing myself to do anything and let the world and everything in it pass by as I was no longer part of it, my self-image was at zero. It has taken months to pull myself out and I now know that not caring isn’t the answer. I had let myself worry only about what was inside me rather than what was outside me, wrongly believing that my surroundings and my appearance and my physical capabilities didn’t matter and they did.

I am sure that Self-image will mean different thing to each of us, but what I do now know is that it is effected by a million little things and only you can tick the boxes that fulfill that image. If you stop ticking them as I did, and don’t think that because today you can’t add a big bold tick, you might be able to tomorrow or next week. I have also realised that the boxes have to change over time, but you have to have them, if you like, you can view it as physio therapy for the ego and we all have one of them. They say vanity is a sin, well I can see that, but when you are housebound and you see only one person each day, who is going to fulfill the human need of approval.