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5 Simple Tasks That Prove I Am Not Giving Up Despite My Illness

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It has been another sleepless night. I have lost track of how many times I have had to go to bathroom. I know I fell asleep for a short while because my alarm actually woke me up. But it couldn’t have been more than an hour based on my notes about my symptoms. The second I open my eyes and take my first pill of the day, I hear that voice: “Don’t give up.” At one point this voice was encouraging; however, as time has passed, it has taken on the tone of my self-critic.

Since my plans for the day are clearly not going to happen today, the self-critic starts by telling you that you are giving up, you aren’t trying hard enough or you are simply lazy and useless.

I decided to make a list of things that mean I am not giving up. Simple tasks lead to big changes and even if I am only capable of simple tasks, I am still living.

1. Getting out of bed means I am not giving up. It is a simple message that I will move my body and still use it.

2. Noticing the flowers and plants blooming in my apartment means I am not giving up. Those plants remind me that I have friends that love me and are cheering for me even when I don’t hear from them. They remind me for a brief instant how things change, and flowers don’t bloom all the time.

3. Trusting myself to do a bladder treatment means I am not giving up. It means I am using tools that have proven effective for me. Each one of the medications and herbs I take means I can live more and more of life.

4. Washing one dish in the sink every hour means I am not giving up. It means I still value a clean and tidy home no matter how long it takes me to get there.

5. Spending time in bed with my heating pad means I am not giving up. It means I need to rest and give my body time to repair. It means I am worth giving myself some space to cry and mourn, it means it is the best way for me to return to full bloom.

I have two orchid plants in my kitchen right now, one that just lost its last flower and one in full bloom. Both of those orchid plants are doing exactly what they were made to, and not giving up can look many different ways depending on the day. I don’t stop watering a plant after the flowers fall off, I trust that blooms will return after some rest and careful care. I am the same way; I deserve to be taken care of and loved even when the flowers have fallen off.

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Thinkstock photo via Laifalight.

Originally published: May 15, 2017
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