02 April 2012

The Itty Bitty Pity Party

"I just had grits for dinner and my coffee pot has broken, 
how do you think I feel?" - T.B.

Sometimes we lose. Nothing goes right. Life fails to cooperate, or, even worse, seems to conspire against us. It is then, when we are frustrated and dejected, that we must allow ourselves an itty bitty pity party. 

I am a firm believer that one's attitude directly corresponds to one's health. The more sullen and bitter one becomes in the face of adversity, the more negative impacts will result. Pragmatic optimism partnered with the determination to always celebrate the small victories and continue looking forward enables one to survive, recover, and carry on. This philosophy of mine has been noted by more than one healthcare provider—often comments about my positive attitude are accompanied by slightly furrowed brows and cocked heads, as if the speaker can't quite understand why, in light of my medical history, I am not angry and dejected. 

The fact of the matter is that of course I feel saddness and dejection! I would not be human if I did not feel these things, or at least I would not be a healthy human. My advocacy for positivity does not come at the expense of negativity. In order to experience the joys in life, we must also allow ourselves to feel the sorrows. Blocking out emotions of any kind limits the overall spectrum we are able to experience. 

When life grows to be too much, when frustration mounts, and the dejection sets in, feel it. Wrap your arms around it. Permit yourself to grieve, to punch pillows, to eat ice cream, to do whatever it is that allows you to both experience the emotion and release it—but do it for a set amount of time; I recommend no more than an hour. This period becomes the itty bitty pity party, and since it's your party, you can cry if you want to. 

Then... get up, get out, move on, carry forward—not for anyone else's benefit, for your own. You are strong enough, and in your own way, you will overcome.

This blog post is part of WEGO Health's Health Activists Writer's Month Challenge (#HAWMC). Prompt: Quotation Inspiration - find a quote that inspires you (either positively or negatively).

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"We are what we think. All that we are arises with our thoughts. With our thoughts, we make the world." — Buddha

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