Yesterday, I decided to throw my underwear away. Not every pair, just a pair where the elastic had started to wear out. Normally, I wear my socks and underwear until they are shreds because I think, nobody is going to see this but me. It doesn’t matter. What I've realized is that kind of thinking like that is another way of saying that I don’t matter.
There was time when it would have been humiliating to be in an accident. I could have been on the side of the road in tattered underwear and socks with holes.
I’m tired of thinking that I don’t matter. I’m tired of saying or thinking it’s just me. In becoming more aware of my thoughts, I realize in how many ways I think this throughout the day. When my kids aren’t home, I tend to eat popcorn, popsicles, or a yam for dinner. I will cook them a real dinner, but if it’s “just me,” I’ll eat whatever and eat it quickly like I don’t even deserve the time to sit down.
I’m not sure exactly when or why I started to put myself last, but I know that I started doing it long before I had kids, and I’ve had enough. It’s old. I’m tired of it. The good news is that I’m changing for the better. I’m doing more and more things just for me. I’m going out of my way for myself. I’m listening to the needs and wants of my body more.
I’m still a work in progress, but I’m living my life differently. I’m going to be a yoga teacher because I want to. Doing yoga makes me feel good inside my body. I’m letting myself go to sleep when I’m tired rather than forcing myself to stay awake because I think I should be doing something productive. I’m wearing my good perfume on ordinary days, and most days I take a few extra minutes to put make-up on because it makes me feel pretty.
I have a lot of work to do and more progress to make, but here’s to throwing out underwear that doesn’t fit. Here’s to us listening to ourselves more. May we all remember that if we value ourselves, the world will not end. In fact, I’m convinced that valuing ourselves is how we make the world better.
I hope my blog inspires you to believe in yourself more and feel less alone in the world. I, for one, am inspired by the imperfections of others who continue to rise up again and again despite life's challenges. May we find ways to inspire and support each other.