You are OK

Here, roughly 28 hours before the New Year, I feel compelled to remind you that you are ok. Right now. As you are. Already bloggers and online news outlets are cuing up articles for January 1, 2022. Lose weight! Eat better! Look younger! Save more money! Everything is so negative, implying that what we look like, do, and have right now needs to be fixed. But what if it’s already pretty solid and just needs to be built upon?

The past couple years have been rough, Sturdy Women, but guess what? You’re still here, I’m still here, and I think we’re doing great. Could you, just maybe, think you’re doing great too?

We all have goals, dreams, and things we hope to ‘level up’ in the New Year, but that doesn’t mean your current operation isn’t pretty darn good. Managing a chronic illness during a pandemic, haven’t you been doing your best? Be honest. This stuff is hard, but I see you.

If you feel moved to make a list of New Year’s resolutions, by all means do that – I have already started mine – but I encourage you to also make a second list, a list of every bad ass thing you did in 2021. Take a few minutes to be proud and honor your awesome work. Here’s my list for inspiration.

Bad Ass Things I’m Proud of from 2021:

  • I flew on an airplane for the first time in 3 years. I asked for – and took up – the space my body needed to be comfortable.
  • For the first time in 10 years I bought a swimming suit, wore it, and swam in a pool. It was heaven!
  • I started sharing my experience with lipedema, lymphedema, and chronic disease publicly and, through that process, found my community.
  • I set boundaries with people close to me who weren’t giving me and my body the respect I deserve. If they didn’t listen, I trusted myself enough to tell them goodbye.
  • One flight of stairs used to be a struggle. Now, I take them at a run just to celebrate my strength and progress. (We all have a little inner Rocky, am I right?)
  • Two of my personal essays were accepted for publication in a forthcoming anthology.
  • I rocked my self-care on more days than I didn’t (compression, pumping, keto, exercise, meditation…)

That’s a list I’m pretty proud of! Now it’s your turn. How did you show up for yourself or others, even when it was hard? What did you dare to do even if it pushed you out of your comfort zone? Write your list in the comments or on a Post-It. It doesn’t matter where you do put it, but do yourself the honor of taking the time.

Start 2022 with the cup half full, you beautiful thing. You are doing so much more than ok.

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