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Reflections: Surgery and a Lesson in Self-Care

Updated: Jul 6, 2020


Today is day 5 of my recovery process.

Last Friday, the 19th I had both of my Fallopian tubes removed in a procedure which is called a salpingectomy.

I had gone to the doctor on the prior Tuesday due to some complications with my cycle. I had surgery about two years prior because we thought I had a condition called endometriosis. My health insurance from my previous job runs out at the end of the month and I wanted to take check into the irregular cycle before it cost me triple to do so. During the appointment, I was given an ultrasound and more abnormalities were found in my uterus. After a several hour-long discussion about the history of cancer on my mother’s side, my lack of desire to have children (as well as my partner’s), and knowing that if the genetics test came back positive, this would be the action I took regardless, we decided to proceed with scheduling the procedure.

Friday came, the surgery went well, and I was home before 6 o’clock that evening. My partner, Chuck, has been a gem throughout the whole thing. Practically waiting on me hand and foot, he has prepared meals, made sure I am not without water, that my medications are on schedule, that I am comfortable, and that my heating pad is always ready if I want it. I am being so fully supported, cared for, and being shown an immense amount of unconditional love.

So why do I feel guilty?

I have to smirk while I write this. How interesting is it to feel guilty that a loved one is taking care of you?

I asked myself: “Hey girl, I notice that you are feeling guilty for receiving care. What a beautiful blessing to be loved and cared for - why do you feel guilt instead?”

The following thoughts surprised me a bit as I allowed myself to really let the question sink in.

“I feel like I am not being productive enough. I feel like I am not being helpful enough. I feel like I am being lazy. I feel useless.”

Woooooow - right? “I feel useless” That’s an intense way to picture yourself.

After a little more consideration I thought. “Okay, I hear ya - Curious - are these things that you would be unwilling to do for your partner or any loved one who found themselves in a similar situation?”

“Well, of course, I would do these things with joy for any one of them. I love them and would want to make them comfortable and help them heal.” --- AHHHA!

“So why is it that they would be deserving of this expression of love and you are not?”


Crickets, because it doesn’t make sense that I would allow the concept of being unworthy of rest or the same careful treatment that I would gladly provide another to reside within me. It is not a supportive thought structure and because thought-forms are energetic structures, this is not an energetic structure I care to support. I am worthy. I am worthy, just as we are all worthy of love - unconditionally.

This thought process caused me to look at the idea of “I am being lazy” - I have a huge fear of being perceived as lazy. I like to think of myself as a hard worker and know that I have received praise in the past for my work productivity and ethic.

I used to look at productivity as how many hours a day I was working, how many tasks I completed, etc. This procedure has given me pause for thought. I feel guilty for being unproductive, but the truth is, in this moment, sitting still and resting is the most productive thing I could possibly do. It is another iteration of the concept of self-care. If I am not well in my own being, how can I help facilitate that wellness in my life, with my inner circle, my friends, my family, all the people I interact with - my world? Not taking time for self-care shows affects how you show up to those around you.

Our culture has taught us that our value is in our output. To be valuable, you must be productive. The idea of what it means to be productive is so closely tied to how you view your worth as a member of society. If you are not working hard to output, then what is your value?

This is a misconception. Our value or worth does not lie in our output in the sense that we have been taught. It does not exist in the hours we spent at the office. It does not exist in how many tasks we accomplish in a given day, nor does it exist in how others choose to view us, nor in the vocabulary they may use to express their view of us. If it does not exist in any of these areas - then where?

Our value, our worth, exists in the space where we are our most true selves. Where we act in our highest and best good. Sometimes that means sitting down in the recliner and not sweeping the floor or doing the dishes. Sometimes that means allowing your loved ones to be in service to you. Allow yourself to be nurtured by others and nurture yourself. You doing this allows you to heal enough to go forward and do the same for others.

I encourage you to ask what beliefs you have created false structures around. What does it look like for you when you are truly being productive? What does it look like when you show yourself enough compassion to listen when your body tells you it is time to rest?

Asking yourself these questions and allowing yourself to delve into what comes up when you do is a big step on your spiritual journey. You are bringing awareness to yourself, what makes you tick, and why. Be compassionate with yourself. This is a process and it is not a competition.

Self-care can look like a lot of things. It can look like putting good food into your body because you know that helps your physical form perform better and improves your cognitive skills. It can look like going to bed a little earlier to make sure you are getting the right amount of rest. It may look like a road trip. It may look like a Sunday bath ritual. It may look like a morning meditation you do. It may look like energy work. It may look like painting, just for fun. It may look like a hike in the forest or reading new material that expands your perception of the word. And sometimes - sometimes it looks like sitting your butt in that recliner and letting your loved one look after you while your physical body takes the time it needs to heal properly.

As always with Love and in Gratitude - Suzanne

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