True Life: Rituals

My livelihood absolutely depends on my rituals. I practice mantra, take meds, breath work, workout, affirmation and self preservation daily. These are the things that keep me. I’m in a place of my life where there is a lot going on. There’s friend challenges, family emergencies, grief, work deliverables/pressures. It’s a lot. Any time I get out of my daily routine I know things are not going well. It’s only been 3 days like this but that’s totally off for me.

So I practice being self aware and taking inventory. I adjust accordingly. I have to reset some of my rituals. The way I speak to myself. The people I spend my time with right now. And what i do to cleanse. Currently taking a break from social media has been a great choice. Distancing myself from friends and family who have triggered an anxiety/trauma response. Again, good choice. But i need a cleanse. For me the equivalence of using sage or palo santo to cleanse a space comes in the form of a shower. It is the only way I can get all that stuff off of me. All the labels and the expectations and the negative energy. It is the only way I can lift my light back up. It’s a cleanse of my temple but also spiritually it’s my way of telling myself “hey girl, ur not perfect no matter how much ppl might romanticize you or hold you on this pedestal. You are who you are. And you are a good person. You don’t deserve to be held hostage by the things that you cannot change. There is no sense in holding onto regret. Or ruminating on obsessive thoughts about coulda shoulda woulda’s. You deserve water. Freedom. A good cry. A good laugh. A hug. Some healing. You are worthy of the same love you so freely give others”

And i lather myself in that affirmation from head to toe. A relief cascades over me because I’m not just meditating over those words; I believe them. Another ritual I have to practice has been asking for help. I have a close relationship with my psychiatrist who i have known for 10+ years. She understands me, and my heart. And she looks out for things that most people in my support system don’t know to look for. She has my back. So taking my meds are a ritual and sometimes some meds have to be cycled back into rotation or phased out depending on life’s stressors at that moment. I used to see this as a measurement of failure. In mental health the view is like if you don’t have to take meds that’s “great” and if you do have to take meds that’s “bad” especially depending on how many meds you have to take. The stigma gets worse the more meds you have to take. Now, believe me, that is totally irrational. There is no way to say that because someone is on 3 meds and someone is on 1 that makes one better than the other. It’s a horrible stigma. And I know with all the things happening in life right now my anxiety is at an all-time high so I have to cycle back into taking an anxiety PRN. And that is okay. I just thank God that I know myself well enough to gauge my needs. And do what i need to do to take care of me. ☎️

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