Mental Health · My Blog · Self-Care · Transverse Myelitis


So each year hordes of people make resolutions. The vow to better themselves and make drastic changes because, well it is a new year after all! Although I am writing this at the beginning of February, I made my resolution in January. Sharing this goal is important to me because I feel that by knowing my intentions it will give insight to some of the decisions I make going forward.

Starting this year and hopefully going forward my resolution is to make better choices & be my own best advocate.

I want to make sure I am evaluating all options before I make a choice and that the choice I make is in MY best interest. I love to help others. I am a giver. That is something that makes me happy. Something that has defined me (at least in my eyes) for a long time. Now that my body functions a little differently I need to be aware that sometimes giving too much time and attention to others can be detrimental to my health. ‘Moderation’ & ‘Aly first’ are going to try to be my friends.

Putting myself or my needs first is not something that I have ever been good at. This concept does not come naturally to me. My needs and desires are things that I always intend to get to, but they generally get pushed back and end up on the back burner as other things arise. This resolution is designed to help provide a check and balances of sorts for my physical and mental health. I absolutely do not want to become some selfish horrible person. Honestly that is the first thing I fear when trying to place my bodies needs above others wants and wishes, as silly as that sounds. To help make peace with this mental battle of mine I have started a list of what it means.

make better choices & be my own best advocate:

  • not overextending myself
  • remembering not everything HAS to be done today
  • showing real emotions to people other than my household – pretending to be happy, upbeat and chipper ALL the time is not doing me any good
  • scheduling downtime – sticking to my empty schedule day even when something comes up
  • asking for help when I need it – even though I hate doing that
  • taking time to see friends
  • saying no when I just can’t – no reason necessary (without feeling guilty)
  • not trying to be supermom/ superwoman
  • remembering that mental energy is just as important as physical energy
  • allowing my time to rest and to take breaks
  • standing my ground when people question my decision for any of the above

I am enlisting my husband, who truly is an amazing person, to assist me with keeping this resolution. Hopefully with having him remind me to take a step back and a deep breath before gaining more commitments will alleviate some of the stress that comes with this goal. I know that backing off from my usual go-getter-ness (yup, that is now a word) will make me feel like I am letting people down, but hopefully I can continue to muster up enough mental energy to challenge those thoughts.

If you end up being one of those friends or family members who I happen to see or do a little less for, please try to remember that I still love you and that if I could still do everything I used to I would.