My life is a little rough and raw right now. Yes, I've recovered from my fall in DC, thank you for asking. I have had other issues, however, in my personal life which make my need for self care to be important, albeit difficult to achieve. It's funny that as I moved through my daily life before, I really didn't give as much thought to self care, mostly because it wasn't imperative. Once it became imperative, I was shocked that I had so little of it in my life. Yes, I had my running and strength training, which keep me sane. What I realized, though, was that there are many aspects to self care, and what I was missing was balance. You see, running and strength training for me are solitary pursuits, and I like them that way. What I didn't have, however, is much of a community in general. Socially, people are hard for me. I really don't know how to make small talk, I feel awkward asking personal questions (maybe because that's all I do in my professional life), and I always feel like I talk too much about me, which makes me uncomfortable. In time of need, people are important, so I've been making more of an effort. What I don't have is a lot of time to go out and be with others, even when I want to.
As a result, I am loving social media. I found a running group on Facebook that's connected to one of my favorite podcasts. This group of people is perhaps the most supportive, the most caring and the most active group of folks I could have found. With them, I feel safe posting my run times, talking about my running issues, sharing their and my personal records and challenges. They feel like family, even though I've never met any of them in person. I commiserate with someone about their rough week at work, cheer when a new member completes their first race, get excited when someone moves to a new state or country. We know lots about each other, and you will NEVER see a snarky comment on that page, which says volumes. I joined an online coaching program for my running, and as I post my daily runs, I get feedback and cheerleading from the coaches and other members and I do the same for others. Maybe to you, this all sounds like torture, but to me, it reminds me that there are people who care out there, even when I can't get to them in person. It means a lot.
Here in the Trenches, divorce can be isolating. The process of ending a marriage or a relationship and all the attendant issues that come with it leaves most people fairly rough and raw. Divorce is an uncomfortable issue for most people, and folks in the Trenches are highly of conscious of that. Their friends avoid them because they don't know what to say or do, or because they're tired of listening. The process itself feels all consuming, and life-sucking. Yet, folks in the Trenches have to go on with their daily lives and also deal with their legal issues. What these folks need more than anything is self-care. They need something to provide them with an outlet and a community who cares for them without judging. It's hard to do, but vital. While in the Trenches is not the time to venture out of your comfort zone, but rather to work with it to get the support you need. What is it that gives you energy? What resources are there for that activity? What groups are there to support you, whether in person or virtually? It can take some work to find what connects for you, and I know that's not what you feel like doing. Do it anyway, because you won't know how much you needed it until you find it. Here in the Trenches.