How A Breakup Helped Me Discover Self-Care

Kedron Walsh is a student in Dr. Sally Mountcastle’s Personal Health and Behavior Change course in the Health, Physical Education and Exercise Science Department at VCU. In this blog post, she recounts how a seemingly bad situation turned into an opportunity to develop her self-care practices.

Wellness truly came to me following a breakup of an almost 5-year, long-distance relationship.

When it came, it hit full force. It was as if, all of the sudden, a massive light bulb came on within me, signaling me to start treating myself better—to start treating myself right for once.

Somehow everything that I had done before, the kind of person that I had been before and every negative and pessimistic thought and idea that I had of and about myself before, just vanished.

I started to realize something that I had never even honored—the notion that I was worth it. That I was worth eating well. I was worth sleeping well. I was worth doing what makes me happy, with who makes me happy and following the things that made me proud to be alive.

Before my breakup, everything that I had put into my body, every exercise that I did and every negative thought that came across my brain, stemmed from this hyper-critical approach to myself, my life, my health, my body, and more.

It doesn’t help that society and media hyper-focuses all attention on the idea that one’s outward appearance and image is of separate and uniquely important value in comparison to health and wellness of the mind, body, and spirit as a whole.

And it was not until I was alone that I began to accept the fact that my self-worth was more than what was on the outside and further that it demanded taking my overall health and wellness seriously.

I think that once I realized this, I found compassion for myself, instead of just for and in others.

The self is not a separate entity from mind, body, spirit. And you don’t have to practice yoga, meditation or any religion to know or accept this fact. It comes from within.

Because identity, health and wellness are interlocked, everything seemingly falls into place. And when it does, it is so magical.