• Katy Rigg

A quick lesson in self-care

On Friday night, I cut my finger whilst making a salad. And not a fancy salad either; a token side salad to go with a pizza. The cut was deep and took my breath away a bit. I froze for a moment to study it and decide how much it hurt.

The answer was: a lot.

I held it over the sink whilst the blood pulsed out, and shouted out for a plaster.

My husband found one and brought it to me, cringing at the flap of skin that was hanging loose. There was an actual hole. He wrapped the plaster tightly around the wound and I felt my finger throb.

On Sunday night I removed the plaster to put a fresh one on and realised that my finger did not look good. There was a white patch of withered looking skin where the plaster had been and the wound had gone green. GREEN.

“When did you last change that?” Rene asked.

“Erm. I didn’t?” I said, realising it had slipped my mind. “I’ve been busy.”

“Too busy to change a plaster?” he said.

I went to bed and thought about this.

Somehow, in amongst all the preparation of lunches and dinners and sweeping up peas from the kitchen floor and cleaning the bathroom and changing the nappies and washing the nappies, and complaining to Tesco about some mouldy raspberries, and ordering new socks for the baby, and numerous hours of pre-nap and pre-bedtime rocking, and all the shushing in the dark, and the daytime nursing and the nighttime nursing, and getting the toys out and packing the toys away, and trimming the lavender bushes, and wiping down the high chair, and reading stories, and stacking blocks and doing several thousand laps of the kitchen lead by tiny hands... somehow in the middle of all of that, the need to check on my finger got lost. Dealing with mouldy raspberries was higher up in the pecking order than my very painful finger.

And now it’s green.

So let this be a lesson to you! Make time for some serious self-care. Especially now, in lockdown, when tedious jobs feel 5008386 times more tedious and there is no escaping the ever-full dishwasher and the piles of laundry and the peas on the floor.

Give yourself a lunch break, leave the dishes and the laundry for a few hours more. Step away from your desk and your emails and the all-consuming heaviness of 2020.

And breathe.

Make time for a long shower, read your book, do some yoga, drink a cup of hot tea, eat all the cake.

And look after those beautiful hands of yours, before your finger goes green.

Do all of this.... right now.

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