Maybe you didn’t even notice, but I took the last two days off from blogging. On Friday, I was so tired and Eric & I had tickets to a play that night (where I was hardly able to keep my eyes open, kept nodding off), and I noticed that I had made 50 posts to this blog. I decided I needed to take the day off.
That one day turned to two, because yesterday I was still so tired. I skipped both of my yoga classes this weekend, have taken three naps in the past 48 hours, am a full two weeks behind in my Ordinary Courage class, haven’t done any writing for National Novel Writing Month, and spent some time watching TV, which I rarely do anymore because I am spending all my time working (this is equal parts good and bad, paid and personal work).
On Friday, I got the “weekly round-up” from blogger Susannah Conway. Her blog is called “Notes on Unravelling the Heart” and I really love it, it’s beautiful and so is she, especially her Friday posts, “Something for the Weekend.” This week, she started the post by saying:
I don’t really know how to look after myself. I mean, I try, don’t get me wrong, but these days I seem to be turning into a workaholic. I’m just so flippin’ passionate about what I do I don’t want to slow down…
And ended with:
And finally, how do you practice self care? What do you do just for you? And if, like me, you find it hard to do…do you want to join me in trying to learn how to do it? xo
Does this sound familiar, dear reader? I had to respond to her post, express the empathy I was feeling, so I left a comment, some of which said:
Oh, self-care. I am right there with you. I made a New Year’s resolution this year, having never made one before, to “be a better friend to myself.” I started to do a lot of work towards that end, only to realize that I had been in an abusive relationship for years, maybe my whole life–with myself. I had been smashing myself to bits, so confused and so sad and pushing myself to earn acceptance and love, exhausting myself in the pursuit and performance and pleasing and perfection that I thought would make me worthy.
Ugh. For months now, I have been taking tiny steps, making little changes, but honestly, I have been mostly doing the necessary grieving. It’s such tender and deep sadness, the awareness of what I have been doing, where I have been stuck. So for now, the real and true self-care is just to sit with myself, to sit with the devastation and cultivate compassion and forgiveness, let go a little, bit by bit.
Another blog I read, Goddess Leonie, published a post on Friday about “How to Make Blogging Sacred” in which she suggested that you should give yourself “Time Out” and linked to another post where she’d talked about “Cave Time.” It’s time that you need to rest, regroup, refresh, restore, rehab. I have also lately been reading a lot of Jennifer Louden’s work around self-care, her books, her blog, her “Savor & Serve” newsletter, so I got the message–I needed to take a little break. So, I did, but now I am back.
Even though I took a break, I continued to notice where I was grateful. Here’s what I missed sharing by being gone for two days:
I am grateful for the tribe of people I have found online who are committed to doing what they love and what is true as they practice compassion, kindness, love, and wisdom with the intention of making things better for all. Chris Guillebeau describes it as “set your own rules, live the life you want, and change the world.” Jennifer Louden phrases it this way, “Self-love + world-love = creates wholeness for all.” They inspire me to do the same. On the right side of this page, you will find links to their websites or online work, but many have also published books well worth reading.
I am grateful for weekends. I usually spend them doing my own work, but it’s good to get a break from my paid work, to have the time away and apart.
I am grateful for the extra hour. We all “fell back” this morning, and even though technically that was the hour we lost in spring being returned to us, I am glad to have it. I’d take a few more of those, please.
I am grateful for libraries. Eric and I walked out of our local library yesterday with our arms full of books, magazines, and DVDs. All free! We said what we always say leaving the library, “Libraries are so awesome, one of the coolest and best things.” And if our library doesn’t have what we want, we can usually order it from another library in the Colorado system and have it sent to us. I love the library.
I am grateful for a growing awareness of my own power. My sanity, my stability, my wisdom, my compassion, my ability to make sound choices, my capacity to learn and love, my willingness to reduce suffering rather than generate more, my gratitude and joy.
- Wishing you an extra hour of love today.