Community Voices: Finding Wellness & Balance In My Everyday
Wellness as a person living with a disability has always been an interesting concept. For most of my life I’ve ignored taking care of myself and my body because I saw it as flawed or less than. I didn’t see any point in trying to take care of it.
But as I’ve gotten older, I started to realize how important wellness can be, no matter what form it takes. It doesn’t have to just be about healthy eating (something I’m admittedly not great at still). Wellness can mean self-care. I love giving myself a facial and lighting my favorite scented candle while watching one of my favorite TV shows (I’m looking at you “The Great British Bake-Off”).
Wellness is a huge part of taking care of your mental health too. Meditation is one of my favorite activities to help cope with anxiety, stress, and even trouble falling asleep. It certainly doesn’t make all of your problems go away or your brain shut off, but it helps make you a lot more equipped to deal with all of the above and keep going with your day.
The other thing wellness is also often equated with is physical health and working out. When you’re born with a disability or any kind of physical challenge, this can get really tricky. I’m not able to work out at a gym because most things there aren’t low-impact and I can risk hurting myself. I can’t even go for a walk unless I have someone with me in case I fall since I’m not able to get up on my own. So, for a long time I just didn’t do anything. Then about 6 or 7 years ago, I discovered water aerobics. Not only is this form of exercise low-impact, it’s fun, and is actually a great workout if you have the right teacher or know the right workouts to do. Doing water aerobics increased not only my physical health but my mental health also. It’s not about weight loss or looking a certain way, it’s about feeling your best.
Whatever wellness means to you, taking care of yourself is one of the most important and rewarding things you can do. There’s no perfect wellness box you have to fit into, just do the things that bring you joy and make you feel good, putting the well in wellness.
Read more of Jackie's writing on her blog through this link: http://imaspiring.wordpress.com
by Jackie Witt
A year ago