We asked the moms in our private facebook group a few weeks ago: “If you had an extra hour in your day, what would you do with it?”
There was a time when if I found an extra hour in my day, I had no idea what I’d do with it.
I was so used to getting things DONE, there was always something to DO.
I kind of let go of my own stuff. My own wants and dreams and loves. Was I even allowed to need, want, dream or love? Should I? Was there really time or space for me, the mom?
What would I savor if given one full hour?
My family, work and life admin took up most of my mental bandwidth - and I fell into a rhythm that worked. Low grade everyday stress was fine. I was fine. But what was I savoring? What lit me up?
Wait, was I bored?
In the interest of giving my all to everything and everyone else in my life I realized I’d closed down my connections to my own senses. I’d tuned out the world.
I wanted to show up for my life, to...
“If you miss the look in your child’s eye one day, you’ve missed it. If you miss the look in your lover’s eyes the next day, you’ve missed that. If you miss the beauty of sitting under the trees, you’ve missed that too. If you add that up over many moments and then many days and years, you may wind up missing the most beautiful aspects of your own life. Who tells oneself they don’t have any time? When really, all you’ve got is time, all you’ve got is this moment.”
Stop. Look. Listen. Feel.
We’ve all had those moments of: I’m here but I’m not here (on your phone at the little league game? Lap glowing at the stoplight?) Before we go any further, we’ve got to start practicing being just a little bit more mindful. We benefit in crucial ways.
Simply put, mindfulness is a way to break free from being on autopilot. By paying attention to...
I was living in my body but we weren’t on the same team.
I felt impatient or angry when it was sick or injured.
I felt pleased when it was lean and strong, a reflection of my (excessive) self discipline.
I grew up back east constantly competing for varsity - on and off the field. You didn’t just go to college, you went to the best college. You didn’t just play sports, you were the best player on the field. I was used to pushing through resistance even if it hurt. There wasn’t a lot of sleeping in, bench-sitting, rest or recovery.
To be honest, it didn’t occur to me that I was allowed to struggle. That I was allowed to have problems. I just had to figure things out, mostly on my own - perhaps to a fault.
These were the stories in my head.
Until I was diagnosed with primary lymphedema.
It took years to diagnose the peculiar swelling in my leg. It would come and go for the most part, but after my second pregnancy, it didn’t. I...