Taking care of myself…putting my needs before the needs of others…thinking of what I need to be happy…these thoughts are so alien, so foreign to me. I have put myself last for my entire life. Even as a child, I tiptoed around, trying to be “good”, so mommy and daddy wouldn’t fight and have angry voices. As a teenager, having sex with guys I didn’t really care about, because it was what they wanted. It made me feel needed and loved…for a little while. Then, I became a wife and mother. Putting myself last seemed natural; a good mother and wife took care of her family, right? Even in my job, I take care of others. It is what I do best.
I guess I have made some tiny steps in doing a few things just for me. For example, my “photo shoots” (Wow. That sounds like I’m some kind of professional or something!). I try to find some time at least once a week to take photos. Admittedly these last two trips were really to please the hubs; I just went with him where he needed to go and brought along my camera. He “humors” me, I know. To him, taking pictures of trees and old buildings is silly, but he loves me so he stops and lets me shoot away.
After all of this time, how do I change? Where do I start? What is the first step to taking care of me? I don’t even know how to begin.