(NEW art, available here)
Self-compassion changes everything
When we’re utterly overwhelmed
When we think we’re a burden (we’re not)
When we’ve gained 10 pounds
When we missed a birthday
When we’re sick, again
When we could have done more
When we worry all the time
When we look in the mirror
When we’re grieving and everything is upside down
When we eat too much or too little
When we overwork ourselves
When we compare ourselves to others
When we are full of regret
When we are tender and vulnerable
When we are full of rage
When we’re in pain
Self-Compassion changes everything.
(Sticker from my art shop, available here)
I’ve been dealing with some health stuff over here, including months and months of pain in my neck and back. I won’t go into detail, but suffice to say it’s extremely disruptive to my sleeping and waking hours. Turns out I have post-traumatic multilevel disc degeneration disease, total loss of neck curvature, and osteoarthritis. All of this is due to a gymnastic injury that happened thirty years ago. It is not reversible. At the same time, I’ve learned I have some pretty intense digestion/leaky gut issues that will take many months to heal, plus lots of allergens (rice, gluten, dairy, yeast, and more) that have been creating autoimmune responses for a long long time.
I have begun all sorts of healing from food changes to herbs to physical therapy and so much more. Feels a bit like part-time job and a complete lifestyle overhaul. I have cried many times, felt depleted, weak, and totally overwhelmed. I have also felt incredibly supported by friends and family. I have noticed how just the right practitioners have dropped into my life to help me find my way along this new path. I have deep knowing and trust that I am in this human body to experience all of this in perfect and divine timing. I know the lessons here on are deep. There is grief to be spilled. There are new narratives to be told. There is a lot of letting go to be done. There is growing up to do. There is an opportunity here for my spirit to be brave in sadness, brave in healing.
As I make my way through, I’ve invited The Spirit of Self-Compassion to be my guide. To remind me that I am good. That this work to heal is the kindest thing I can do for my body. That I can let the rest go, including the long list of work to-do’s, holiday to-do’s and more. Ultimately, Self-Compassion reminds me to trust that all of this will lead me toward the next breadcrumb trail along my Possibilitarian life.
Sending much love, Kelly Rae
I’m just catching up on this blog post. I’m sorry to learn about the diagnosis. Yes to self-compassion!! Not sure if you’re aware, so sorry if I’m being redundant, but there’s a lot of great research on mindfulness for both reducing pain and helping with coping with pain. The Body Scan meditation is a great place to start. You can find that meditation recording everywhere online. I think I have a YouTube on it and also have one up on SoundCloud. I’m glad you have a supportive team. You’ve given so much to those of us in your creative community over the years. I’m sending you heartfelt wishes for wellbeing. Many thanks for all of your creative inspiration –past, present, and future. May all of your generosity be reflected back to you tenfold and more.
Hi Kelly Rae. I’m a new reader. Your photo popped out at me on Pinterest yesterday and the outfit you were wearing and your question, “where do I buy my clothes?” made me wonder… “yah, where do you buy your clothes?” I’m looking at your road trip post this morning and resonating with the pandemic fatigue and then clicked on the link to this one to see the challenges behind the joy. Thank you for being the light and for the reminder that we don’t need to be perfect to be the light and live in the light. My world has felt dark for the past few weeks and I was fading in my commitment to “being the light”. I’m happy to have stepped into your light. Now is not the time for any of us to be
faltering! I will pray for you with everyone else here and send my own version of positive thoughts your way. xo karen
Karen, welcome to my little corner of the net :). And thank you for your words, too. Yes to navigating the joy and the challenges of being human. We all hold so much in the chaos of joy, grief, highs, and lows. It all matters. xoox
God Bless you Kelly Rae for all the joy you share with the world. I hope, in your quiet moments, you can feel the prayers surrounding you. I am grateful to be a part of your journey.
THank you, Melody. Yes, that’s it. I DO feel surrounded and held and supported. Thank you for reaching out and checking in 🙂
I’m so glad you took your much needed road trip!!
My heart goes out to you with all of your health complications! It won’t be easy, but you are such a beautiful and kind person to all of us, we will be there in thought and support you every step of the way!
I hope you will feel better soon! ♥
Thank you, Susie! I’m so glad I went as well. Learning that we need to delight our spirits as much as possible as we navigate being in human bodies 🙂
Sending LOVE & LIGHT to you dear Kelly Rae. XOXO
Thank you, Emily 🙂
Dear Kelly Rae: I was so very sorry to read of your recent diagnosis. I will pray that you have a full and speedy recovery…..relief from pain and the stress and depression it causes.
Your recent work on self compassion is so beautiful. What a gift you have in your art and how fortunate we are to have you share that gift. Wishing you well.
THank you, Diane and for your well wishes and kindness 🙂
I’m sending you strength, courage and peace on this healing journey. 💓
Thank you, Lauren 🙂
I read your post with great interest, as I too am suffering with neck pain and gut issues. I need to take a look at self compassion as I tend to let that go when working so hard dealing with pain and the work of healing. Thank you for your post.
Thank you, Cindy. Sending you healing as you make your way though. Self-kindness,self-kindness, self-kindness.
Kelly Rae I am so sorry that you have had so much to deal with. Your journey and comments have been inspirational to me and others. I pray that these new modalities of treatment are successful. It hurts my heart that you have had to endure such pain. I took note of your comment about being the light and especially looking for the light in others when
we just can’t come up with it.
Always love hearing from you, Ellen. Yes, I’m definitely seeking the light and finding it, too. Thank you for reaching out and checking in on me. Sending love to you!
Hi KellyRae, I’ve just read your piece on how you’re not well at the moment, and I’m sorry to hear this, and am sending you healing. I’m not in the habit of leaving comments on people’s pages, but your words struck a chord with me. I too have very similar food intolerances to yourself, I too have experienced a health crisis, and like you I tried several routes to healing. None did the trick. It was then that I remembered an article in a magazine I’d read almost twenty years earlier about Homeopathy. Divine timing of course! After just one consultation my life completely changed. I urge you to try this avenue of healing, find a good practitioner- not one who is in mainstream medicine who then decided to “incorporate” homeopathy into their practice, but one who is purely a homeopathic practitioner. The healing is holistic so will heal you on every level. Just needed to give you this ray of light and hope and faith. I wish you well.
Thank you, Trish. I’m definitely on the homeopathy/naturopathic route as my Wester med docs (as lovely as they are) have very little insight to the nutrition piece of this. Thank you for the nudge. I appreciate it 🙂
Hi Kelly Rae,
Sad to hear that you are suffering and I very much hope for your healing. You make beautiful art and make us all smile. We all wish you well.
Thank you, Viveca!
Hi Kelly Rae, I’ve been going through some health stuff as well. Your bravery and vulnerability in sharing your story is heartening. I am praying for your healing and your hearing strong whispers as you seek answers and comfort. Blessed to be part of the tribe that encourages and supports you. Much love and grace!
So blessed to be on the receiving in of such support. Thank you, Lori!
My thoughts and prayers are with you as your life goes through these changes. I have been dealing with similar health issues for some time. We are strangers but share a love of art and a knowing only those with chronic health issues can understand. I wish you well!
Thank you, Cindy. Sending you much healing as you make your way thorugh, too.
Kelly Rae –
Sending healing love your way. You have inspired so many of us to notice the beauty of the ordinary and to love in ways that serve our highest good. I pray you continue to feel the love and support that is yours to receive. You are a beautiful soul.
You made me tear up. Thank you for this. Received with an open heart 🙂
Dear Kelly Rae,
Thanks for sharing this part of your journey. As I lay in bed, sick again, feeling overwhelmed by life, I take in your wisdom as a timely healing balm for my Soul.
I always find something I relate to and mighty bits of inspiration in your updates, thanks for writing them! AND I absolutely LOVE LOVE my planner, thanks for creating it! 🙏
Best wishes for you and your family for the holiday season and for your healing journey 💫
HI Simo, I’m so glad you love the planner! I think it’s my favorite one we’ve ever done :). Sending well wishes to YOU and you heal up.
Dear Kelly Rae,
Thank you for sharing your beautiful and painful stories with us. You and your work have been inspirational to me and so many others who doubt themselves and hide their stories, their gifts, and their beauty. May you heal and be freed from suffering. I am sending love your way.
Leslie, thank you for your love and care 🙂
Hi Kelly Rae,
I am sorry to hear what you’re dealing with. I wish for you profound healing and wisdom for your doctors to get you back on the healthy path again. I appreciate you sharing your struggles with us as it looks as if you don’t have a care in the world most of the time.
It is refreshing to know that you can be vulnerable in such a public way. I believe it helps those of us who struggle with the same things that are on the list you created above where we need to allow ourselves so much self-compassion . . . a constant practice of mine.
I needed to hear this today and I thank you for sharing your dear heart with us and helping us reach down deep to connect to our needs in order to walk a more authentic life and learn to be gentle with ourselves.
Much love, light and healing to you…
Here’s to practicing self-compassion and vulnerability always, always. Thank you for sending along some encouragement and wellness wishes. Apprecitated greatly.
Wow! Who knew! All the while Kelly Rae Roberts is helping little ol’ me get through major and minor ‘bumps in the road’ since 2011, I totally forget to even think you are a ‘real’ person with issues and challenges, too. I have so much of your ‘inspiration’ in my home (and in my brain and heart). God’s blessings to you. Please shine on! Never quit.
Thank you, Emma. Yep, totally real person over here, lol. Thank you for your encouragements :))
I’m saddened to read of your recent struggles but experience so much of the same issues. It would be amazing if you could share your journey as I’m confident it can help others (me included). Great doctors, nutrition, supplements, exercise, etc. I’m awful at taking good care of myself but you inspire me in so many other areas that I’m hopeful I will change my ways (even if just a little).
In reading your comment, this is percolating within me…
I love the idea of Self Compassion Dates with Kelly Rae! A mix of creative expression, forgiveness, radical but gentle self care tips and the practice of turning the gaze a bit more towards possibilities and a little less and less frequently towards limitations and restrictions, wether it be about diet, time or other life areas. It’s definitely something I would benefit from and enjoy being a part of. ☺️
Thanks to all who shared on this thread! I feel less alone in my journey!🙏
Ohhh, this sounds like something for me to think about. Perhaps creative journaling with self-compassion as the the theme. Love!
I hear you Tammy. Consistently caring for my physical self has been a lifelong struggle, too. I will absolutely share my updates and expereinces along the way as I figure it all out 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing your health and healing journey. As a breast cancer thriver, I know the ups and downs and I know your Spirit is definitely guiding you to all the right people and resources! I am praying for your health and peace and wishing you an abundance of joy-full blessings!
Thank you, Italia. Thank you for your well wishes and thanks for sharing your story with me, too.
Kelly Rae, I am just so sorry to hear of your health concerns. Sigh. You continue to model “being with” whatever comes up and I am grateful to you for sharing this, which can be a mirror for all of us. Sending love. xo
I am praying for your health and your patience with yourself while you implement the changes necessary to make yourself as healthy and comfortable as possible in your new life situation.❤ Sending peace and patience.
Sending much love to you Kelly. It will take time to adjust to the new challenges of your body but you will. As always, thank you for sharing so openly.
Thank you, Jude 🙂
Take care Kelly! I wish you healing, love and light as you navigate through this next season. You are held!
Thank you, Lisa 🙂
Thank you so much for sharing your health and healing journey