Whether or not you consider yourself to be taking on the heaviest load possible, self-care is exceedingly important. Living in a capitalist society, we’re told repeatedly that working is the most important aspect of our lives, and health–both mental and physical–comes second, with many people wearing a lack of sleep as a badge of pride. Our mental and physical health should come first, and many people are beginning to realize that employees who get adequate rest, healthy food, and regular exercise tend to be better employees.
This week, I booked my first massage therapy session. I don’t have health insurance so when it comes to my chronic pain, massage therapy is a cheaper alternative to a doctor who just looks at you, gives you a prescription, charges you $80 and sends you on your way. Of course, there is a time and a place for traditional doctors and medications, but taking a pill for pain every day is not my idea of fun, and if massage therapy works, I’ll take it.
My partner had to convince me to book the appointment, however, because I felt guilty wasting the time and money on something “trivial.” I felt irresponsible doing something for myself. What my partner understood that I initially did not was that my body needs to be taken care of, and spending time and money to keep my body happy and healthy wasn’t irresponsible, wasteful, or anything I shouldn’t be doing.
I’ll update next week with how my appointment went, if it helped me, and if I recommend it to you.