Archives for posts with tag: good self-care

It’s a comfortably cool, somewhat humid morning. The red-wing blackbird outside the window is piercingly reminding me that the feeder is empty. Β It is, and that’s because it is fully summer, and there is no “food shortage” out there in the meadow and marsh this time of year, and I moving very soon. It’s time to prune back the roses for traveling – although this year a friend with a truck seems likely, and perhaps I won’t need to cut them back so much as the last two times I moved? I am now full of enthusiasm for this move, and I smile even thinking about my initial anxiety and frustration with having to, now that I’m past that.

…It’s still really hard to get started. It’s time to box up all the books and breakables. It’s time to take down all the paintings that are hanging. The more prepared I am, and the more small work I’ve done to be ready for the movers (and friends coming ’round to help out with moving), the less time I have to spend actually moving, and the less I have to pay the movers for fewer hours of their work. It’s still really really hard to do the first thing – whatever it ends up being. Beginning again, as often as I say the phrase, sounds so… easy. Just… do the thing, right? Yeah. That’s totally true, and also… totally not as easy as it sounds, often. lol Where to begin?

Any new journey begins somewhere. A moment, a location, an opportunity, a choice; a change-in-progress has to have begun with something. So, this morning I’m a bit hung up on that beginning, because this upcoming weekend kicks off the packing of things into boxes. πŸ™‚ When I go to get the keys, I’d ideally like to have a carload of stuff with me, to bring into the house – I mean, I’m making the trip there, the end result of which will be keys in hand, right? It just seems practical to take stuff over with me. What to bring in that first car load, though? I consider the most likely immediate needs at both ends of the move… a drink of water, a cup of coffee, a quick bite to eat, or a trip to the rest room… someplace to sit down… a plan begins to form.

I figure I can easily take over one or another of three coffee solutions at hand. I’d need to have at least one coffee mug, at least one drinking glass. Packing the pantry seems an easy step, too. A quantity of my breakables have never been unpacked here in this apartment, although I had the space for them – I never reached my “buy a new hutch or curio” goal, in my budget. Higher priorities cropped up more than once over the course of the year. Moving them over is easily done…and goes a long way toward making me feel at home in the new place, and also more relaxed about the move by getting them out of harm’s way early on.

So the morning over coffee goes… I make a list, think it over, shuffle it around, consider cubic footage of space in the car… pack it in my head, unpack it, re-pack it. By the time the day is here, this will feel planned and routine – and hopefully comfortable. I rely on that feeling of preparedness and ease to keep my anxiety at bay; every time I move seems to “change everything”, and getting settled can be a long process for me.

I’m pre-occupied with moving – fortunately, I find it also a great “living metaphor” and as the process unfolds, I am also considering the woman in the mirror and her journey. It’s time to set down some baggage, and get more comfortably moved into my life, and my experience. It may not be easy to get started, but it is time to “walk on” from one thing to the next, with a full tool box full of verbs, and a better idea of who I am – and who I want most to be. My results may vary, but I can begin again, and begin again, and begin again – and incremental change over time is unavoidable; we become what we practice. So.

Begin again? Sure. This path definitely leads somewhere

I’d meant to be writing much sooner, finally getting a good night’s sleep and waking feeling fully rested and wholly clear-headed it seemed likely to be a good day for it.

…I’m still sitting here, more than an hour later, just sipping coffee, and continuing to plan out my upcoming move. πŸ™‚ Coffee’s good, though.

I listen to the red-wing blackbirds, assorted songbirds, the breezes and even the traffic beyond the park. This audible viewpoint won’t be the background music of my at-home experience for very much longer. The water birds on the marsh, and the eagles and owls in combination with the specific songbirds in this eco-system have very much their own sound. I soak it in. I’d like to remember all the very best things about this experience of life, here. I didn’t think twice about letting the writing fall to the side, overlooked, while I took time to savor this moment, right here. πŸ™‚

The dawn came later than I expected. The sky is overcast, a smooth formless gray. The temperature is comfortably cool. I enjoy the view here, although I often find myself carefully positioning myself so that my field of vision does not include the playground to the left, or the basketball court to the right. I enjoy the illusion of uninterrupted nature beyond the edge of the patio, but it has always been an illusion.

The flowers just outside my window are visible from my desk, against a backdrop of green lawn, and meadow beyond, very different than if I look at them from the lawn, looking back at the apartment. Same flowers, though.

Who will my wild neighbors be at the new house? Will the squirrels right here “miss me” – or even notice that I’ve gone? How long will it take for the squirrels at the new house to notice someone different has moved in? I smile and finish my coffee; these are questions for another day, some other moment. I pull myself back into this moment, now. I breathe the meadow breeze deeply, and enjoy the scent of summer flowers. I listen to the coming and going of the commuter train; it is a work day.

I notice there is still time to get some tidying up done, and to meditate. Good self-care works best practiced regularly, for me. I guess I’ll get going on that… or make another coffee, and sit on the patio enjoying the morning for a little while longer… πŸ™‚

 

It’s been crazy hot this week, so far, and I’m relieved that there are cooler temperatures in the forecast now. The lack of shade on this apartment, now, results in being unable to cool it enough during the night, or in the early morning, to achieve any sort of comfortable indoor temperature the next day. It reached 100 degrees (F) yesterday, maybe a tad more, outside, and inside it reached almost 90. I still managed to smile, and most of that is due to the knowledge that the new place has A/C, and the recollection of hotter places I have lived (the desert… Fresno…). Besides, it was too hot to do more than lay around quietly breathing, sweating, and drinking water. LOL

I managed sleep, which was nice. I feel okay this morning. Somewhat… sticky… even after my shower.

Weird day, and I ride the emotional currents without concern, without fighting it. I’m okay. Today I’m out of the office providing logistical and emotional support to my Traveling Partner, who is having a procedure done. I’m sipping my coffee, alert for that moment when it is time to leave the house to catch the train to catch the bus to be at the place at the time. All very routine, somehow.

Over time, more of the things that once wracked me with anxiety or provoked tears or anger just… don’t. I’m fine – and I’m fine to my very core, without any particular noteworthy effort beyond routine good self-care practices, and meditation. It’s nice. It would have been wonderfully encouraging to have been able to foresee improvements over time, or rely on them utterly with the kind of certainty that comes of knowing things. Clearly that’s not really a thing for me; I’m pretty sure friends and loved ones may even have suggested, helpfully, that I “try meditation”. I’m pretty sure I’ve done so for others, and gotten the very same result my own friends got with me; “I’ve tried that, doesn’t work for me”, “I’ve tried that, I don’t think I’m doing it right”, “I don’t know how to do that”, “if it doesn’t come in a pill at great price, it can’t possibly work”, “if it requires my personal accountability or effort I’m not interested”, “not if I have to change who I am”, “I can’t.” Well, shit. That about covers, doesn’t it? Do you. 0_o

We become what we practice. Over time, in increments, in moments, by way of our choices, by way of our repeated thoughts, repeated actions, repeated words – we become what we practice. We build ourselves and rebuild ourselves, we tear ourselves down, we allow the world to tear us down, too. In spite of that, it seems far to simple – impossibly simple – that this very same notion of incremental change over time could be applied quite willfully. Sometimes the easy answers are the hardest ones just because we aren’t convince-able. We won’t, more than we can’t.

Where is your will this morning? Maybe just some really small thing that would be just the tiniest bit better… that could be doable, right? For me it may have begun, if I follow the thread all the way back, with a gentle suggestion that I try getting up earlier in the morning, and slowing down my routine to give myself time to really be awake before starting my day. No kidding. Sure, I still went through some major changes, bullshit, drama, upheaval, hurting – even hitting the bedrock of rock bottom, emotionally, came after that…but that moment, choosing to change my routine, exploring that one tiny seemingly insignificant change, was a domino, and the rest started falling into place over time.

What are you practicing?

It’s already time to begin again. πŸ™‚

If not this moment, when?

Ready? Let’s do this!

…It’s a new dawn…it’s a new day… it’s a new life for me…

…And I’m feeling…good. πŸ™‚

I feel right

…even…happy.

It’s a nice morning. Things to do. I ended the day, yesterday, on a bitter note. I was overcome by sorrow and tears. I’ve no idea why. Tired? Hadn’t meditated? Wasn’t sufficiently well medicated to support needed emotional resilience? All of those things, I suspected at the time, and what was weird is that although I was totally overcome by it, and also utterly unable to lift a hand to help myself – even though I knew what I needed to do – I still somehow managed it, rather by happenstance; I was trying to make an angsty moody sort of post on Facebook, pretty typical really, and quite human, and I went to attach an appropriate picture to that post… I kept scrolling through pictures of smiles, and pictures of flowers, and pictures of forest hikes, and pictures of the way the light hits the water in the summertime, and… I started giggling, just a bit hysterically. I just couldn’t find “photographic evidence” to support my misery in the moment. LOL I’m okay. A fears tears aren’t fatal. πŸ˜‰

Growth over time. We become what we practice. New self-care practices built over time become default habitual behaviors that support us.

The evening actually ended well. My moody moment was obviously more biology that emotional reaction to things, or events, and I finished the evening taking care of me, and noodling around on my bass, calmly, contentedly – and then crashing out rather later than I intended – so this morning I slept in a bit. πŸ˜€

There’s an entire lovely day ahead… I wonder where my path leads today?

It’s still odd getting used to working Sundays. I’ve got the car for this one, and that’s actually pretty nice. I slept badly; it takes time to get used to new work days or hours. I woke a couple times, and struggled with anxiety coming and going, of a fairly garden-variety “will I remember to go to work?” sort. I know that will pass.

I also woke feeling discontent, which may or may Β not have anything to do with the fact that it was acid reflux that woke me, about 15 minutes ahead of my alarm. Unpleasant. The result of my discontent, which was with me before I fully woke up, is a bit of snarling at myself in the background over tedious this and that, which could easily be handled with consideration and kindness. I figure I’ll get past it, once I’m awake, have had some coffee, some time to meditate, and time for the antacid I finally thought to take to have its effect. Rather than also snarl at myself over snarling at myself, I make a point of not taking my morning irritability at all personally; it’s very human.

My coffee is terrible this morning. Yes, I am drinking it anyway. lol As with life itself, sometimes I take a few swallows of a bitter brew before I realize I could choose differently. πŸ˜‰

The sky is gray as the dawn comes. The forecast says it will be a hot day. The breeze filling the apartment with the cooler morning air feels a bit muggy. Tomorrow the forecast is for hotter weather still, but the temperature appears to drop again, after that. I hear a rare rumbling of thunder in the distance. I try to get my head right for the work day. How does the weekend feel like it has been both so very long and also so very short? How am I so tired?

I think back over the weekend – it was much less productive than I meant it to be, one possible source of my irritability and discontent this morning. I fuss over the feelings for a moment, before realizing the likely shortcut to being over it is to go ahead and feel it, acknowledge the feelings, and make choices that result in a different experience. lol So practical.

I am definitely having my own experience. I would prefer it be a different one. My results vary, and I have so many choices… being human, it can be so hard to go ahead and choose… There are verbs involved. Looks like I need to begin again… πŸ˜‰