You know how you’ll have something all planned out (a project, your days and schedule, etc), hours and tasks all mapped out, and you feel SO good about it. It might look like a lot of baby steps and busy-ness, but you are ready to go, determined and eager. Who cares that the to-do lists are a little on the long side or that you are working through the weekend a little too often.
And then …
The Universe goes, “Oh ho ho! It’s time to learn a wee lesson about self-care/patience/priorities/or-what-ever-else-you-need-to-learn!”
Yep. All of my plans from March were not just waylaid. They were decimated.
It took me 13 full days to get over the flu (and I’m still not sure if I am back at 100% yet, but that could be Spring allergies). 6+ days of fever caused me to miss my own birthday, made me too weak to knit (the HORROR), lose 5 lbs, and almost made me miss my daughter’s 12th birthday party. My well-placed plans of pattern writing, knitting, work tasks, and birthday celebrations, those pretty pen marks that filled out the pages of my planner, fell to the wayside. I was in tears about falling behind and disappointing my team. And then five things happened in rapid succession:
- My husband told me to rest. Everything could wait.
- My boss told me to rest. Everything could wait. She also shared this blog post on Self-Care.
- My friend, Teresa, told me to rest. Everything could wait.
- I took this personality test (so cool: 16 Personalities) and it said this:
Live to Fight Another Day: Really though, it is most important for INFJs to remember to take care of themselves. The passion of their convictions is perfectly capable of carrying them past their breaking point and if their zeal gets out of hand, they can find themselves exhausted, unhealthy and stressed.
- And I received awful news that a local woman at my children’s school had passed away from the flu turned pneumonia/sepsis. Probably the same flu I was fighting. And she was only a few years older than me. She was a mom, active and engaged in the community, well loved. And it could have been … me.
Ok, Universe, I think I’m getting the picture here. Get thee to bed and remember that everything else can wait. Live to fight another day. Self-care is something that I’ve long let … lack. Oh, for sure, I take great pleasure in making time for my favorite things (eating chocolate cake, knitting, writing), but it is not very often I slow down on my to-do list to make time for “caring of ME.” For nearly two years, I woke early, before the sun, to nurture my spirit with meditation and journaling. Stress and a cross-country move made me lose motivation for that. Knitting has been mostly job-related for over a year now. And eating chocolate cake? I couldn’t even have any on my birthday because I was so sick.
I don’t really know if that was the lesson the Universe planned for me, but the timing of Spring’s growth and the energy that slowly returns after days in bed can’t be missed. And, thus, I have a new plan: Clock out by 6pm, make smaller to-do lists, and spend the weekends like other normal people do by doing something for me. Like knitting socks for my own feet. Grin.
So, here’s the challenge, my dearest friends – you and I are going to make a pact, a Spring Self-Care pact. We’re going to devote one hour, just ONE hour a week to doing something nourishing, indulgent, and caring for ourselves. First, make a list of what that means for you – perhaps it’s knitting something for yourself? Taking a bubble bath? Meditation? Blowing up your journal with all your ideas and dreams? Sneaking out to the local coffee shop with a good book? And then …. DO IT. Are you in with me?