A few nights ago I couldn't sleep. My legs were so tired, they felt like lead. My brain was just slop. My entire body was shaking with exhaustion. I was fatigued! Up since five and the whole day had been go-go-go. And yet I couldn't sleep. I wanted to scream.
I tried counting my blessings (try counting your blessings instead of sheeeeeeep, and you will fall asleeeeeep counting your bleeeesssings). Did not work. I tried moving out to the couch and creating the world's comfiest bed of pillows. I tried a lot of things and couldn't sleep.
So I moved on to my next activity when I can't sleep and it's past the point of no return (three AM. after 3 all of the kids start waking up and needing me. I swear. so going back to bed is pointless). I started berating my body. Stupid body! Why won't you just sleep when you need sleep! You are so dumb and worthless! And then I moved on to other things. Bladder, you are garbage! Literally! Nerves and muscles that are out of whack, oh heavens, I HATE YOU!
Really violent stuff here. Really hateful and full of spite.
And then back to the original, "Oh body. Why won't you just sleep?!"
And then, like a blanket, I started feeling peaceful again. I started praying just kind of idly, talking and imagining and day (except it was three AM) dreaming. And then the Spirit said, "Brooke, be kind to yourself."
I understood something I'd never understood before.
When my body won't sleep, be kind to it. It's tired. It doesn't know why it won't sleep.
When my face is wrinkly and old looking, be kind to it. It's had to express all of my emotions for my whole life.
When my pelvic floor is causing horrible pain, be kind to it. It's trying to heal.
When my heart is aching, be kind to it. Especially my heart. Poor dear.
When my back, my legs, my neck, my trunk, my fingers, my ears, my brain, my head, my cheeks, my jaw (dang TMJ)… when any of it isn't doing what it should, be kind to it. It's doing its best.
And then I thought, wait a second.
My body is ME.
When I'm not where I should be, where I wish I could be, where I want to someday be…
I need to be kind to myself. I'm doing my best.