A week or two before Thanksgiving, I started feeling really crummy. While I never really got sick, per se, I just had no energy, was having trouble with dizzy spells, weakness, etc. I told myself I was probably just fighting off some infection or something (poorly, due to my pathetic immune system), and I’d feel better in a week or two. But it was the beginning of a gradual consistent decline. For a while we thought maybe the issue was a change that had been made in my medication, but it turned out that I had managed to contract mono (at my age!) from some unknown source.
As I wrote in The Four Agreements, by far the hardest point for me to follow is Always Do Your Best.
- Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to when you are sick. Under any circumstances, simply do your best and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.
Yep, I suck at this. Royally. I don’t want to do Karen’s best. I want to do Supermom’s best. AND Superwife’s best. AND Supernanny’s best. AND Superdaughter, Supergranddaughter, Supersister, Superfriend, and all the other Supers. All at the same time. Without fail. I don’t care if I’m sick. I can’t give myself a break just because I’m sick!
Ugh. Alas, I was so dreadfully ill that I had no choice. I couldn’t do all the things I wanted to do. I couldn’t even do most of the things that I NEEDED to do. But that didn’t stop me from beating myself up for it. If only I was stronger, or tried harder, or pushed myself a little more….
So I’ve had to reevaluate what is critical. It’s especially hard this time of year. I usually make home-made Christmas cards, and some home-made soaps. Neither of those things are happening this year, and I hate it. But it’s just not physically possible. Intellectually, I know people will understand, but I still find it tremendously disappointing. I tell you guys that Christmas doesn’t have to be Martha Stewart perfect to be memorable, and I believe that, but I still find myself striving for that ideal. I have to constantly tell myself that my best today is not my best yesterday, nor is it anyone else’s best but my own.
If I get too down on myself, I actually end up accomplishing less than if I had just allowed myself to do what I am capable of, right now, in this moment. Maybe one day I will actually learn this lesson. I’ll keep trying. And I’ll do my best. 🙂
How about you? Does anyone else do this to themselves? Does it make you feel better to know that you’re not the only one?