Monday 24th January 2022

Self-Care Stories (#4) in COVID19 Times. 28/51 #LifeThisWeek. 56/2020.

Self-Care Stories (#4) in COVID19 Times.  28/51 #LifeThisWeek. 56/2020.

I went looking for my Self-Care Story #3 and found I did not write one! What?! No, it was because “I” decided to get another of my Telling My Story chapters published. So, even if I did not do #3, I am back to write what the latest is for me and self-care.

Self-Care: Regular Routines.

As many know, my routines post-head and neck cancer surgeries and treatments have been to help me re-connect with the world out there, socially and physically. This was something I began about 3 months post-operatively in 2017.

I was getting used to a different body. I had always hidden it as there was too much fat…my words. So, when anxiety and head and neck cancer helped me lose a lot of that fat, then I found C L O T H E S a very attractive way to spend my time…looking, trying on…and wearing.

It was a huge boost to my ego and generally to my health over all.

I coupled ‘getting dressed with purpose’ to going out for a daily coffee, where I would interact with others and despite no teeth on top for 14 months, I made friends where I went as I had conversations.

There is no way my reconstructed mouth was going to stop me talking!!

Then in 2020 Self-Care Got a Shock.

From around March, self-care the way I used to do this every day had to stop. The shock for me is that I wondered how I would deal with the restrictions that came with self-isolation, COVID-19 thank you not.

I was understanding cognitively what I had to do, like everyone else, and that was stay home most of the time and only go out for essentials. I remembered my shock as the first day of real change came because I went to my local shops for some groceries, and everything was being locked up, closed off, taped off….sad to see. Then I thought of all those people and their employment (sad) and of the people whose daily routine was to go to those shops and now they could not (sad again).

I also found, as time went on, that I needed to change my attitude and thinking about what was happening. Yes, we had a virus somewhere in the air that no-one could see or touch, and yes, it had to change the way we went about our daily lives. I recall that I got a shock/surprise at the restrictions placed upon us even to visit the chemist and the doctor. I needed time to process what was in fact, good safety measures.

Changing My Thinking During COVID19 Times Helps Self-Care.

So, over time, I built-in some new ways of integrating self-care for me with what we had and had not. These three quotes, source is in image, have probably best summed up how ‘life is now for me’.


Telling the Self-Care Stories in Images. March – June 2020.

How is your self-care these days?

Maybe you’d enjoy this 18 seconds…


Link Up #197.

Life This Week. Link Up #197.

You can link up something old or new, just come on in.

* Please add just ONE post each week! NOT a link-up series of posts, thank you.

* Feel free to go with the prompt for the week to add your ‘take’ on the prompt. Or not.

* Please do stay to comment on my post as I always reply and it’s a bloggy thing to do!

* Check out what others are up to: Leave a comment on a few posts, because we all love our comments, right!

* Add a link back to this blog in your post somewhere, or on your sidebar or let others know somewhere you are linking up to this blog’s Life This Week.

*Posts deemed by me, the owner of the blog & the link-up, to be unsuitable for my audience will be deleted without notice. These may include promotions, advertorials and any that are overly religious or political or in any way offensive  in nature.

* THANK you for linking up today! Next week’s optional prompt 29/51 Your Choice. Mine is: World Head & Neck Cancer Day. 20.7.2020

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

Click here to enter



  1. Hi Denyse, love all of your photos and especially the video of the waves. I love watching the ocean from my balcony or walking over to the beach. They are always soothing even when the seas are rough. As you know, I’ve written often about self-care and the importance of including this time in our life for good health and well-being. I also agree that self-care comes in many forms. Your lovely smile and photos of you scattered throughout your montage brings joy to my day. Take care and have a lovely day. #lifethisweek

    • Hello Sue and thank you for your kind words about my smile and photos.

      I do the best I can to self-care…and some days are easier than others.

      My trips to the beach or the lake or river are to remind me to take time to notice and be in nature.

      Such an important part of my well-being.

      Your support is always appreciated.


  2. Denyse

    Thank you for your wave video and also your reassuring, wise words about living with Covid 19.

    Be well

    SSG xxx

    • My pleasure SSG.

      I am enjoying putting a little video together like this as I believe it’s helpful for me to share…and I am grateful others enjoy it too.

      Doing my best, within the current circumstances, to live with COVID times.

      I am feeling, however, we are going to back in more restricted times soon in NSW.

      Stay safe! Be well.


  3. Lockdown was big and difficult in so many ways. I’ll be honest, I almost cired when I saw the news of Victoria (for them) and I’ll def cry when we lock down again, which I think is coming because people are being so stupid. That all said, I also think we are luck in a way keeping blogs with photos because when this is all over, we’ll have a ‘diary’ with visual reminders of what it was like…for what that’s worth.

    • Yes I understand how hard it must have been for Victorians to ‘go back’ and I suspect this will be NSW soon too.

      No way this virus is going away and so many people became complacent. I include myself. I had stopped the hand sanitising when out and coming back home. Back to it now.

      I also want my elective surgery to go ahead next week…just in case they reduce that again. It’s taken more than a year for me to admit I must have it and I do not want to have to psych myself up again.

      I am glad too now I have made some blog posts related to COVID. We can hardly avoid it so, like all bloggers why now record it!

      Take care, I know you do.


  4. I feel your pain Denyse and appreciate the time and effort you have out into managing your self care, especially during these past few months. It’s not been an easy time but you have worked hard to maintain your equilibrium and are an inspiration! Thanks for all you do to support others while maintaining your own self care. I love the wave video and all your photos depict your story well.

    • Thanks so much Deb. I remember my slight anxiety at the thought “but if I can’t go out for a coffee…how will I be caring for myself?” I really did have to do some re-thinking and evaluating how I could still choose how to approach the changes. I actually am quite enjoying a coffee with a Coles pastry at home these days after I have been somewhere in the car. Who knew I could change! And it’s a lot less costly.

      I am so glad you have been to see 2 grandchildren recently.

      We are crossing our fingers that we will see our son’s 4 with him this weekend as last time we did it was late 2019.

      Enjoy your Queensland stay.


  5. Denyse, Good for you to make adjustments and continue with your self-care. Your very mindful drawing is impressive. Thank you for sharing your photos and video. Have a wonderful week! #lifethisweek

    • Thanks so much Natalie.

      Making the adjustments did not take too much time once I made up my mind but it did take a bit of thinking.

      Now, I am set up well for either getting a coffee when I am out or waiting till I get home. It’s actually cheaper at home too!!

      Mindful drawing is my #1 go-to in times of anxiety and next week my art kit will come to hospital with me. It was invaluable 3 years ago after my cancer surgery.

      Happy Summer Week ahead.

  6. I love your quotes Denyse. I think I need to ‘dress with purpose’ as you say, in at least one day a week. I’ve been living in active wear during isolation and it’s starting to be a bit depressing

    • Thanks Jennifer, those quotes help me greatly.

      I do a Calm Meditation before getting out of bed these days and there is often a very appropriate quote there too which I share via FB stories or twitter.

      Dressing with purpose remains a done deal. And just adding some lippy and moisturiser, doing my hair adds a freshness to my appearance and well-being.

      I will be challenged a bit to dress with purpose once I am home and recovering from surgery but will give myself credit for going through with it!!

      Take care,

  7. Once again your ability to tap into what you need to recharge inspires me. I’m only a 20 minute drive from the beach but I rarely get the opportunity. I love watching the waves roll in anytime of year.

    The empty places during lock-down were extremely confronting and indeed very sad. When exactly did we slip into the parallel universe of living in a B grade movie?

    Much love. Xx

    • Thanks Cheerleader from the South…you!

      Your words buoy me greatly.

      You do know, of course, that I am going to ask “WHY” do you not drive to the beach? I understand commitments and perhaps not even being motivated as that happens to me a bit but every time I decide to do it, the benefits outweigh any of the doubts I may have had.

      I sense NSW won’t be far behind Victoria in locking down again. We got too complacent too soon I think.

      Take care…of you first!!

      • When we moved to our new location, only 20 min from the beach I speak of, I had a plan in my head to take the road trip once a fortnight. Hasn’t happened with any regularity yet *shrugs shoulders in disbelief* Other things always seem to take priority and of course the old carer guilt kicks in for wanting an afternoon to myself. *again… shrugs shoulders* My brother is in the process of relocating a little further down the coastline (40 min drive) so when he’s around doing things at his house I’ll often pop down with my Mum for a visit. Hope to do much more of that when he’s here permanently. Once I’m there I breathe it all in until the next time I can get there.

        We are outside of the lock down zone… for now. No new cases in our shire area for a little while now. I’m not sure some of the small business’s in my area would survive having to shut down for a second time. I feel for them.

        Stay safe now. Xx

        • Oh thank you for coming back to explain more…I understand time alone and solitude are a must. The beach is visited less by me because we are now about 20 minutes from it instead of 12…honestly, I ask myself why…because when I am there I am glad.

          Hopefully will feel good to get out a bit more. BUT with all the risk factors health wise and the nasty COVID I sure get why you would be staying put. It IS an awful prospect for many business wise I can tell.

          Take care..of YOU first for a bit!

  8. It’s funny as I was thinking about this at my exercise class today. I’ve had some breathlessness lately and it occurred to me that I might not be able to work as hard as I did at last Wednesday’s class when the time comes around. And I had to stop and think… “You know, that’s probably okay. I don’t need to push myself too hard.” And I thought about your topic today!

    • Well-done you on the good self-talk.

      I have become soooo much better at this now and it is a matter of stopping that “older and familiar voice” with STOP…and allowing the kind and more compassionate voice in.

      I am so pleased for you Deb. Not about the exercise per se…but the self-care!


  9. I love how you’ve done this as a montage. And I think I might just save this video of the waves to play when the day gets too much.

    • Thank you Jo.

      I just love my little videos which I do make to share. I have two art friends from the US – never met – and they love it when I send a piece of the Pacific Ocean via video.

      Hope your self-care is going well today.


  10. Love the self-care you’ve been doing even during these times! Water therapy for the win! And how good is it to be able to go to coffee shops! Thanks for the lovely video too. Hope you have a lovely week ahead!

    • Thanks so much Sanch.

      I am saving up my water pics, videos and experiences for when I am home recovering from surgery and not allowed to drive…boo! However, I am sure, if asked and I am up to it, B would drive me over to Soldiers. I shall see.

      Hope your week is a good one and I am so glad you are happy where you are now after your move.


  11. Your photos are lovely Denyse. Even the small things we used to take for granted, like sitting for a coffee at a coffee shop, are now appreciated much more. That’s one of my favourite self-care activities, along with walking in the sunshine and writing or other creative activities.

    • Thanks so much Christina.

      I do love sharing my images and putting them together for the blog where it suits.

      Yes, nothing is really back to how it was even though shops etc are open as we have this ‘invisible’ enemy in our midst.

      I like your self-care favourites too.


  12. It’s been tough this year having all the usual self-care comforts shaken up. I’m glad that you’ve been able to find other ways to practice self-care and keep in a good frame of mind.

    • Thank you Bella.

      So much in life IS about the mind isn’t it?

      I know that is something I have learned over and over in recent years so I guess I was, in a way, ready for COVID challenges.

      Hope you continue to do well.


  13. Hi Denyse, I think the whole COVID-19 thing has made us even more aware of self-care and appreciating all that we have – especially the beauty of nature and the value of friends and family. I enjoyed all your pics and you seem to have handled the whole last few months really well.

    • Thanks Leanne, I agree that we have had to take more notice of what is REALLY important and take care of that.

      We do need to remain connected with family and friends and whilst COVID made that a challenge it also showed us not to take that for granted.

      I am glad you enjoyed my pics as I love sharing them too.


  14. I love your pics. They make a great Covid 19 diary. I enjoyed the stay at home for a few weeks because I am usually out and about everyday but the novelty soon wore off and I was missing my mum and my friends.

    • Yes I got into a rhythm at home but still needed a little drive somewhere just to listen to my audiobooks and have a change of scene.

      I learned to do without the coffee out every day which was a surprise and now even though cafes are open again I am not minding having one back home.

      Covid changes us! A bit anyway.

      Missing people is hard for sure.

      Thank you V,

  15. If there was a way for places to always be empty of people without people losing their jobs, that would be my dream! I hate how over crowded life is in public.

    • It is as if COVID never happened in some places, I agree.

      I too would like to see people “remembering” what social distancing is..that would be a first for me.

      Take care,


  16. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on self-care during COVID times. I must admit there were days in March when I went right from my pajamas to my running clothes, right back to my pajamas again (after a shower). Your words about shopping for new clothes after you lost weight struck a chord with me. Thanks for sharing the waves video. Very calming!

    • Thanks so much Laurie. Self-care has been a challenge at times.

      It has been tough on us…the tension and the confusion at leadership level making it moreso. Not just in your country either! We have states managed in different ways with changes of COVID restrictions and it can be very unsettling.

      Always a pleasure to share my little videos.