Wednesday, December 4, 2013

I took care of MYSELF to take care of MY FAMILY

“What you do today can improve all your tomorrows.”                                                                                                                                                   -Ralph Marston
I love to hear these words- ‘Take care,’ makes me feel so special and cared.
I even like to hear when somebody says: ‘Take care of yourself!!’ Feels like ‘you’ matter in their life. But I could have never learned the serious message in it, until I realized- this means, “look at you- you have been neglecting yourself.”

Take care of yourself- really had a strong message for me.
I like to immerse myself and feel the wise words and suggestions- when I read books of my favorite authors. And this is when I came across the line -“Remember… nothing is as important as you are…..Take care of yourself…”
I paused for a moment to over think- Am I really taking care of myself? Do I really know what I want in life?
Talking to anybody won’t help you, as much as talking to yourself about you-would do. By the time I realized this- I was already a hypothyroid patient, a stay-at-home tired mom, a dependent wife -with no other identity- who had no future vision, subdued dreams, no passion to live with (except my daughter), and was still living a satisfied life- living happily- but not from inside out.
Taking care of my feelings, my needs and my dreams were so important; but I never paid attention to any of those emotions.
I kept my days busy- with my family, affectionate husband, adorable kid and life’s daily struggles.
The mantra of my life was-“Accept what is there without indulging in- what I want!” But inside me all I needed was: ‘A Life Lift.’ Certain constant creepy feelings kept stroking against my unspoken emotions.
Deep down inside me I always wanted to step forward and do something- I have been longing to start.
I felt restless, frustrated, depressed, and just like a failure. My thyroid problem helped me adding up to those negative feelings and I sensed- I am going to lose it!
I wanted some inspiration to take care of the loose ends in my life, behavior, career and my emotional needs. I wanted to have my own identity- apart from being a ‘dependent’ wife and a mother to 1-year old daughter.
I realized: I was not living my dreams; and that is not all I wanted. Rather than screaming demands, I decided to make my family understand- my values, dreams and passion- I must listen to my heart and carry forward this life-happily.
Life is just too short-to-not-dream and to-not- execute- your- dream (s) in real life. But actually, I was not sure-what I wanted to do and where to start from!
There was already 4 years gap between expectations and reality (in my career), and there wasn't anything I was doing, that could have defined my skills and experiences.
“I was just another woman- on a quest to-define her dreams and values.”
I didn’t have the courage to stand up again (all alone) and select my purpose. All I did was: just kept thinking- how to begin.
I was not unhappy with my present life, but, “I wasn’t happy either!”
I am glad: I realized it sooner than later. Taking care of my emotional needs was as important as taking care of my physical and social needs.

I didn’t have anybody to hold responsible for my present condition, but sometimes I felt- all were responsible- my family, my life, my idleness, my past, my disinterest and actually everything around me!
I decided: I will listen and comprehended every possible demand of my unspoken needs.
I took care of all the hidden stress- to balance my life.

Improving upon my emotional health was a rewarding experience, benefiting all aspects of my life: including boosting my dull attitude, building resilience, confidence in my acts, and adding to my overall enjoyment of life.
Few tasks I realized was necessary right away-
1.    I am first, while being there for my family always- I was already a tired mom and a restless dependent wife. But at that moment, all I needed was- a long worry-free nap!
 I could not think of anything else that would have satisfied- my not so pleasing heart and mind. I wanted to wake up fresh and energetic to take care of my family’s requests.

 2.    Understanding of my emotions to develop a ‘strong’ family- Always deep within me, I was struggling with some unspoken fears and failures. Fear to take on anything new-that may lead to another failure; while past failures kept haunting me over and over again. But soon I learned- I had gained a good amount of wisdom and courage from my failures, and so decided: I will take the challenge and move ahead in life.
 I allowed myself to dream once again, encouraged to try something new, and do it!

 3. Learned about my weaknesses to strengthen my family- We have more weaknesses than actually we can think and accept.   Next important thing I wanted to do was- to take control of my negative qualities like: feeling neglected, always ranting, hopelessness, uncertainty, unhappiness, disinterest and feeling regretful.
 I was afraid- I had actually passed a few to my family; because they knew- I was not an enthusiastic person (I used to be) anymore. Actually I was horrified by this thought- how I can help my family stand strong and take on any challenge- that life throws at them- when I am not confident!!
Ultimately the commitment to myself- helped me rediscover the power of my own spirit. I understood: When I learn more about myself- I can teach my family and guide them through similar paths that I tread!
 4. I decide to “live my passion” while practicing compassion- I followed my passion. My life is equally enjoyable now as it was before, but in a different way. I can ‘now’ define myself. I have a purpose. This explains everything. I was looking for a passion; for a purpose- that will define me. And I am glad: I was able to identify this.
 I risked taking up my writing career once again. I (always) wanted to share my experiences and help people- uplift their life –through emotional setbacks. And I knew ‘blogging’ was the best option. But I could not imagine- failing in life again!!
I decided to respect my well-being while remaining connected to my family-both physically and emotionally. But being a mother and a writer- was never going to be easy.
But I also didn't want to hold onto the regret, just being a stay-at-home mom, so I ‘valued my dream and taught my husband and kid too; to value each other’s happiness and dreams.

 5. I caught ‘my dreams’ to create new ones for my family- Certain areas of my life definitely needed attention and re-work like: mind, body, soul, emotions. Oh! Hope I did mention just few!
 I had to understand what can bring me happiness and a satisfactory life (at present) – to understand and care my family’s needs!
 I am glad- “I did take care of myself,” and improved all my tomorrows. “I remained concerned about my life, wishes; inculcated respect and ‘value for dreams’ in the family, while respecting my thoughts and visions.
End of the day- it was all about “attitude,” attitude towards own life. I continue to wear a ‘caring attitude’- for myself as well as family. It has been two and a half years now; I am still a dependent wife and a stay-at-home-mom; but now I live with an identity-that defines me and my purpose of living.
I have also added another passion to my hat- photography. I try to justify my roles while paying attention to my happiness, dreams and interests.

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