Well, nothing has changed. And everything has changed. My mum came for a visit and told me to “be kind” to myself. Which seems obvious. But sometimes we need to hear the obvious.
After my post about not being able to ask for help, a friend suggested Facebook groups. I have joined a few, but I don’t get too involved – I have a tendency to want to fix everything. Turns out, I know quite a lot about dealing with Little Person and her autism, I make good decisions and I can manage my emotions effectively. Even if I don’t realise it. Yes, I know. That’s not what I am supposed to be taking away from these groups, but it’s a way to be kind to myself.
Last week, one afternoon I spent at least half an hour sitting in the sunshine while Little Person played upstairs. And training the dog to stay. Sort of. But then the dog came and lay down by my feet and it was good. There were twenty zillion things I was supposed to have done but I let the sunshine wash over me. And I fed myself kind thoughts.
There are always things to do. There are always things waiting to go wrong, but there’s kindness too. Everywhere, like the glitter from last month’s party that you keep finding stuck to your shoes or underneath the placemat or the next time you get out the salad bowl. We want our kindness prepackaged according to our own expectations, but sometimes, a sunny day comes calling and the kindness that only you can give yourself is waiting.
I have spent many months hoping for the kindness of others. And yet, in being kind to myself, perhaps I am freeing myself to appreciate the kindness they can give, rather than the kindness I want from them.