Be Not Afraid

31 Days of Facing My Fears: Day 25 Saying No and Letting Go of the Guilt

I have many loving family members and wonderful friends.  I am so grateful for this.  I love going from place to place to spend precious time with them.  It is so good for my heart.  However, it is not always so good for my mind or body.

I am mentally and physically exhausted right now.  It seems that pumping my body with toxic chemicals (toxic, yet life-saving, such a strange dichotomy) has taken a toll and left me with extreme fatigue.  I am finding day by day that I can’t function (pleasantly, at least) on as little sleep as I used to.  This is a bitter pill to swallow, but one I am more than willing to take, given the second chance at life I’ve been given.  And I trust that with time, it will get better.

But, that doesn’t change the fact that after the past few weekends filled with celebration, house-guests, and traveling, I’ve reached my breaking point.  In the past few days I’ve been blessed with these invitations:  the chance to honor a dear friend and her departure, the chance to join new friends in leading worship, the chance to travel and spend time with my sister and her beautiful family, and the chance to travel and spend more time with my wonderful in-laws.  It is hard for me to say no to any of these invitations, let alone all of them.  But one of the important lessons I learned from having cancer was that when my body talks, I need to listen.  And right now, it is telling me that I need to say no, and to let go of the guilt I feel about choosing to rest.

For, if I don’t rest and take care of myself, I can’t give my best to others.  In fact, this was made abundantly clear yesterday, by my short retorts to my sweet husband, my avoidance of phone calls and texts from friends, and my short temper with my innocent, loving, little boy.  I have not been giving my best to anyone the past few days, and that breaks my heart.  So, I am facing my fear of letting others down and missing out on memory making times, and choosing to say no, at least for this weekend, when my body is telling me to rest.

I need to be completely present to my family to make sure I don’t miss any moments like this:
Dad and Baby

My prayer for you today is that you listen to the cues your body is giving you, and when it tells you it’s time to rest, you take the time to rest, without wallowing in guilt afterwards.  Realize that your family and friends deserve the best of you, and that to give them your best, you need to be well-rested, in both body and mind.

Thank you for joining me on my 31 day challenge!

Previous days:

Day 1: Be Not Afraid
Day 2: Fearfully and Wonderfully Made
Day 3 Keeping a Faithful Heart in Light of Suffering
Day 4: Facing Fears with Laughter
Day 5: Listening to My Heart
Day 6: Daring to Love Myself in Order to Love Others
Day 7: Opening Up My Idea of a Remarkable Life
Day 8: Giving Voice to My Fears
Day 9: Being a Bearer of Joy
Day 10 & 11: Give Everything
Day 12: Switching My Focus
Day 13: Reaching Out
Day 14 & 15: Letting Go
Day 16: Giving Voice to My Dreams
Day 17: Putting Fear into Action
Day 18: Clear Eyes, Full Heart
Day 19: Strength, Wisdom, Courage, and Clarity
Day 20-22: Facing the End of Things
Day 23: Showing Delight in Others
Day 24: Embracing the Dawn


    • Thank you, Caroline! I actually thought of you when I wrote this post, because a. it took bravery, which you display a lot of, and because b. I always admire how you listen to your body and treat it with respect (I mean, except for the whole shingles incident…. 😉 ).

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