It's a time of regrouping around here. In some small ways -- because it's summer, and we can change gears and change focus. And lose some focus. In some big ways, too. Sometimes, things come together (or fall apart) in a way that simply insist you take a look at how things are working. Life can be... intense.
So, some stepped up self-care is now in the mix. In the last month, it's been cranial-sacral chiropractic appointments, acupuncture and Chinese medicine, various western med perspectives, SLEEP, no caffeine -- yep, it's all on the table. I'm fine. But, changes are required.
The first order of business has been a nightly herbal foot bath, recommended by the Chinese medicine practitioner I'm seeing. Each night as I move through the ritual of setting up my soak, I think, "Doctor's orders!" What better way to end the day, and the "doing"? I literally cannot get/do/make that for you -- my feet are in a tub of water. (I have been asked to do this for a whole month. A whole month. Yes, I willlllllll.)
This topic (self-care, that is, not wet feet) reminds me of a favorite conversation among parents. Years ago, a friend had a beautiful idea for a group aimed at supporting parents and caregivers of infants and toddlers. She asked me and a couple of other colleagues to join her in starting it up. We called it the Family Connection Program, and I had the pleasure of running the program as well being on the steering committee. Every week we had time to talk about topics that families were interested in. One of the most memorable for me was about caring for ourselves. On this morning, one mother talked about how restorative it was to go away for the weekend without her child. Another mother shared that on that rainy morning (as on many others), she sat in the car in the parking lot for five minutes before joining us. Her two kids were buckled into the backseat happily listening to a favorite cd, and she sat quietly in the front with her hot tea.
Caring for ourselves can come in so many packages. It isn't one-size-fits-all. It isn't even one-strategy-always-works-for-you. And sometimes we think we're doing it -- and it turns out, we're not.
The other day the kids and I were out, and we needed lunch. So aware of accumulated wear and tear -- and that the day before had been my birthday! -- I decided we would go to lunch somewhere we had never eaten before. (Are you picturing your children's eyes widening at this decision in the backseat like my children's were?) Yes. That's right, kids. I enjoy doing new things. I like trying new things on menus. I realized just how long it had been since we had done something new. I like new! I need new sometimes! We had a lovely, lovely lunch. Everyone found something on the menu they liked. It was just what I needed. (Until the sun set, that is, and I could get my feet back in the tub, that is...)
|What's happening here?? Let me get a closer look...|