I have taken a little break.
From everything and nothing.
I just needed some time to sink into the world again after being removed for so long. When the habits start getting too comfy, it’s time to make some changes.
I no longer was allowing myself to fall into the habit of laying in bed when things got to be too much. I was no longer allowing myself to down a bottle of wine and binge watch Netflix until 2AM when I wanted to escape my head. I stopped buying crappy comfort food.
I started buttoning and zipping pants again instead of pulling on loose sweatpants to convince myself that my clothes still fit.
It is amazing how in such a short period of time that I spent living in a haze of depression and self pity, I kind of forgot what I used to do when I was not doing those things.
I love to write. I love sharing with the 3 people on here who possibly follow my blog. It’s not a matter of number or who is out there listening. I love to do this for me. It has been an amazing outlet. I just want to do more with this than simply bitch and moan about my pain and misery.
I called this blog “Dharma in Heels” for a reason. I like getting dressed up and looking pretty and girly while also feeding my soul with honest-to-God introspection.
So, I have spent the past few months breathing. Getting acclimated to my new job. Exploring my yoga goals (more on this in a minute).
Reading a ton. I missed reading.
I was so scattered for so long that I lost the attention span I needed to just sit still and be. I needed the distraction of fast moving colors and lights.
Reading was an old neglected friend that I connected with again.
Reconnecting with friends.
Reassessing some of the people I called friends in my life who turned out not to really be my friends. Or, at least for now are not my friends.
Nothing is permanent. The universe always rights itself.
I have spent time trusting the universe again when, in actuality, it never really let me down. I was quick to lay blame on anything in my path. I may have thrown the entire universe under the bus a little.
Lucky for me, it does not take any of this personally. I am sure I am not the first whiner it has encountered since the Big Bang.
From the start we made mutual promises to each other.
But… I was the one who welched.
The universe, who unfolded itself to me when I asked for it to do so, never once curled itself up in a bed refusing to face me – I was the one who did that.
The universe was always the one patiently waiting for me to wake up and turn around.
So…. In waking up and turning around and putting my feet back on the floor, stretching my arms and saying “OK – I am up – I am back in my life…. Now what?” I had to dedicate myself to…. myself.
I have written in the past about my complicated views on “self-care” and my fear of it being selfish and self-serving.
Yet…. nothing embodies crawling up one’s own ass more than laying down and refusing to get up. And so, while blinking my eyes into the light I had to make some new promises to myself.
The simple, yet challenging promise of taking fucking care of myself.
Taking care of myself, I have discovered, is more than eating right, exercising, and getting sleep. Although those are all crucial for me.
I can no longer have a bottle of wine, crackers, and cheese for dinner.
I can no longer consistently subsist on 4 hours of sleep a night. I can no longer park my ass down for hours at a time.
I just can’t do these things anymore.
Yes – self-care means maybe once in a while enjoying a late night, and a few extra glasses of wine. Or a lazy day. But the person that I am thrives on feeling good and the only way I can personally accomplish that is by just living healthier.
Self-care though, is so much more.
Self-care is realizing I am having a recurring negative thought and challenging it. It means speaking up when I am not happy about something instead of silently stewing over it.
Self-care means forgiving myself.
I grapple with that one.
I am constantly fighting away all of the angry dialogue calling me a failure. A loser. Useless. Worthless.
Most days, those voices are louder than the one that tells them to shut the hell up. Louder than the one that simply says “I forgive myself”. But that voice is there. It will give it the oxygen it needs to speak up and speak out.
That voice will belt it out nice and loud one day.
Self-care means listening to my 9 year old when he tells me to stop joking about being an “idiot.” Even about benign things like spilling my coffee or forgetting to buy something at Trader Joe’s.
“Mom… calling yourself an idiot will just make you depressed again.”
HOW did he know? I kept it hidden from him!!!!!
Self-care means being aware that young eyes are always watching. And learning.
Self-care isn’t just about me.
Self-care means buying healthy food so I can cook for my husband for the first time in a billion years. And then we can sit down and eat together.
Not separately on the couch because he kind of didn’t feel like having Merlot for dinner on a Tuesday night.
Self-care means that I can care for others.
I get it now.
It wasn’t just me lying in that bed. It was my family. My pets. My goals. My promises. Everything.
And when I entered the world of the living, it was right there ready for me.
My stepdaughter who just made me a grandma.
A 42-year old tattooed, gangster-rap listening granny.
But a grandma all the same. I have someone else in my life now who is watching. Learning. Growing. and I want to just explode with love for him and not be the hot mess granny who smells funny and never bakes cookies.
Self-care means taking chances. Doing things that scare me out of my comfort zone.
So… On top of everything else, I decided to take the plunge and pursue my 200 hour yoga certification.
I don’t know what I want to do with it yet. I told my husband that the last thing I want to do is teach a room full of women in Lululemon pants (don’t get me wrong – I love my Lulu, but….
I just feel I was called to this somehow. I made a promise to the universe when this all began that I would follow wherever I am led.
And then I parked myself down like a mule refusing to be led anywhere.
But when I got up, the path simply blossomed in front of me. It’s pretty and smells nice but I still don’t know where it will lead.
I will follow it though. Simply because I have realized that getting lost is different than being lost.
Getting lost means you are still moving.
Being lost means you are wailing and crying with snot dripping down your chin looking for your mommy.
“Being” anything means attaching a label to it. A way of living and feeling. I don’t want to BE that person anymore. I need to get going again.
Getting lost means, at some point, you get found. Or something finds you and then the path becomes the place you were supposed to be all along.
I care about myself, finally, enough to keep moving. To admit I am flawed and broken.
As the amazingly brilliant, beautiful Leonard Cohen said (rest in peace, you amazingly gifted motherfucker):
There Is a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.
I care about myself enough to turn that light back on and let it get in through every crack I have earned in this little life of mine.