Today was the day of races in my head. Ideas chasing one another, competing for a win. I've learned on days like this, nobody wins. So I drop out of the race. . . and read in bed. That is of course, only for as long as I can. Luckily, I do not live alone. I have three little people running in and out of my day all day long. What a blessing these interruptions are to me! They never fail to bring me out of my head. Though sometimes, they do set me spinning. "Mommy, I'm hungry." "Mommy, Charlote layed two eggs!" and my least favorite: "Mom, can we play video games?" Bored or hungry children. . . a great reason to get out and do what needs doing.
My counselor, Pat Edmundson, from the very beginning affirmed a new truth I'd found. Listen to your body; what does it need? Another counselor, Mary Some-thing or other, had me wrap myself in an embrace, pat each arm gently and say, "I know I haven't been there for you in the past. I'm here for you now. What do you need?" This is in stark contrast to my earlier m/o: "What should I do?" I spent every day of 31 years asking myself, "What should I do?" and trying so hard to do it.
So now, "What do I need?" is my question. Yes, sometimes I still do whatever it is I should do. But I no longer push myself along, demanding conformity . And I remember to ask, "What do you need? I'm really here for you, what do you need?"
I've yet to fail to answer. Something always comes to mind: a good cry, some down time, some tea, yoga, a warm bath, a meal, time to write, time to create, an hour or two of reading, a hug, a little silliness with the children, time to linger in the library, a chat with a trusted friend, or just something out of the ordinary routine. Routine is helpful, but I am wary of it's power to make me conform to impossible circumstances. A break in routine says, "See, you are still in charge!"