On Audre Lorde and Self-Care

I have always struggled with taking care of myself.

Not only do I put the needs of others first, I find it challenging to spend time in “treating myself” in ways that actually take care of me. It’s easier to disappear into a pile of blankets and watch The Good Place for the fifth time than it is to engage with what I actually need.

But I am learning to see self-care as Audre Lorde did – an act of self-preservation.

As a disabled person, I have to prioritize caring for myself in a way that others don’t. Doctor’s appointments ad nauseum, researching specialists and treatments, managing my many medications, tracking symptoms and possible triggers.

Respecting my limits so I can go on to fight another day.

I like to think this is the kind of political warfare Audre Lorde meant – keeping yourself alive despite the forces trying to destroy you.

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