A new fork in the road discovered…

I have been walking for a long time on my journey, a journey filled with new beginnings, better understandings, and an appreciation offork-in-the-road life.  The path I walk has been fraught with highs and lows, along with a few stones which I have stumbled over.  While I have learned so much, I can’t shake the feeling that there is so much more ahead.  I await the next step eagerly and with much anticipation, as I see a new fork in the road ahead.  It is time to take a chance….

 

Busy life

While I am not a soccer mom, I am a working wife and mother who has three kids in sports.  The seemingly endless running from game to match is exhausting, yet exciting.  I love watching the kids play and I couldn’t be more proud.  I end up becoming so involved in the game or match that I get angry at bad calls, and exhilarated when we score. quiet

The busy life also makes me appreciate the quiet times, the times when I can be me and do not have to wear the mom or wife hats.  These quiet times enable me to rejuvenate and prepare for the next round of busy.  Self care helps me be centered, balanced, and happy.  It also keeps the irrational crazies away–those times when I can go from zero to mad in 10 seconds.

When you come home from your busy life and you are extremely exhausted, and your bed is screaming your name, take 15 minutes of quiet.  There is a definite need to unwind and breathe.  We take on so much of the world every day that we need our time of peace and quiet.  Love yourself and take care of yourself.  Your life and health depend on it.

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Quieting life down

Life equals busy and busy equals being on the move, all the time.  There are so many things I want to accomplish, but the feeling of having no time surrounds me.  Work, children, sports, school functions, cleaning, cooking, all combine to create a very full, very busy life, with little time for self care.  In these busy times, I need to consciously slow myself down and take time for me, my writing, and my self care.  The power of self care can recalibrate the mind and bring everything back to center.  When I am centered, the ideas flow and I am able to visualize future plans and goals.  The senses come alive.  I hear birds singing, I see details clearly, I smell the crisp in the air.

My busy life is the organized, helpful, and nurturing part of my world, but my quiet life is the thoughtful, caring, and creative part of my world.  The parts go together very well, but there are times when the balance is shifted to one side more than the other and it becomes hard to control.  The need to return the balance is imperative and learning to maintain the balance is the key.  Quiet life down and listen.  The answers will come.

The removal of monkeys

The monkey stole my free time.  I have been so busy feeding monkeys, I have lost myself.  The time has come to pluck them off my back, one by one, grab my laptop and do the thing that makes me so ridiculously happy and connected–writing.  There is such freedom in writing and sharing, as well as reading my fellow bloggers’ posts.  This is a huge part of my self-care and I love it.  looking out the window

As I am a recovering codependent, there are times I still fall off the wagon.  I do too much and I help too much and at the end of the day I am exhausted.  I do not follow my advice and take time for me.  Turning off the worry and the need to fix everyone is crucial to all codependents, yet how do we do accomplish it?  Others know they can continually come to us for help and we are overloaded with monkeys that have come from everyone else’s back.  Time to turn the tables and give some of the monkeys back.  It is really hard to feed them all, is it not?  By hitting the switch to off duty, I am more rested, more caring, more helpful, and more at peace.  Imagine that.  Taking the time to look out the window at the world around me gives me the opportunity to switch it off.  Finding the time to do the things that care for ourselves is important to our recovery.  Your inner child will wake up and be giddy with excitement, as you have found the time to play.  Check out of the monkey business, check into the solitude and freedom of your own mind.  You, and your family, will be happy you did.

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Self Care 102

Self care is a necessity.  A need that must be filled daily.  Codependents tend to get lost in the caring for and giving to others, so much so that their own self care goes unattended.  I have to make a conscious effort to take care of myself each and every day.  Since my interests are varied, it is very easy for me to find something that I can do just for me.  However, many codependents seem to have a hard time finding an interest which would placate their self care need.  Self care can be as simple as watching a movie or reading a book.  A movie or book can take them away from the grind of making life better for everyone else.

Today, my self care involved watching a high school basketball game, interacting with my parrot, and writing this post.  My journey has created many forks in the road which have led to new interests and  curiosities.   This helps assuage my constant need to care for others.  SalsaIngredients

My newest idea, and quite possibly my craziest, is to start my own salsa-making business.  Is it possible?  Yes.  Anything is possible.  What is your self care strategy?  If you don’t have one, you really need to get one.

Warmth on a cold day

Winter is definitely here. A little too early, if you ask me. With it comes a blown-out tire and a car in the ditch–twice. While the day started off on a very bad note, the sun quickly came out and shone brightly. I have the most amazing neighbors and with their help was able to get out of the ditch and made it to work. At work, I paid it forward and assisted co-workers with issues they were having. The feelings of support, confidence, and happiness carried through the day and into the night. It is refreshing to know that you can rely on others and be relied upon.

Finding happiness within yourself first is expected. However, it can be a major accomplishment, if not a life goal for a codependent. We are more concerned with the happiness of others than that of ourselves, and will do “whatever it takes” to make sure others around us are happy. Self care is necessary and important, but the time spent on self-care does not equate to fulfilling happiness within yourself. Happiness is the self-confidence you feel after looking in the mirror and knowing you look great, the dance in your step when you have purchased the perfect outfit, and the joy felt when your dogs greet you at the door upon arrival. That is pure happiness. It must come naturally and from within yourself.  Find it… it is in you.

happiness

Self Care 101

seedling_handsOne guideline I continuously follow, as I travel on this journey, is my self-care regimen.  Not only do I follow the self-care regimen, I preach it.  Every codependent I know and have met has found themself in a rut at one time or another.  Most have an extremely hard time getting out of this rut and fall even deeper into despair and depression.  I cannot emphasize the importance of taking care of oneself.

Self care is a project, a movie, a good book, gardening, shopping, painting, knitting, building, ANYthing that takes you away from your present life or situation and provides you with a brief time of peace.  Almost as if you have pushed the pause button on your life.  When I hit the depths of my despair and fell into a rut, my children were always there pushing me back up.  Just putting a hand on their head would give me a chance to breathe.  I learned that I love life.  All life. 

Coming home from work, I had a brief moment to hug my dog before I had to shield myself to face what was coming.  Would it be an evening filled with anger?  Would I be chastised for not having the evening meal planned, let alone prepared?  The evenings when I could spend a moment in my son’s room while he told me about his day at school was a blessing.  The evenings my ex-husband would pass out on the couch early, was like a slice of heaven.  I was then able to care for my birds, scratch my dog’s belly, and have time for me.  As it turns out, I have quite the green thumb.  My home had been converted into a green house.  Gardening is apparently my self-care.  I love watching my plants grow and thrive.  I planted them.  I cared for them.  I loved them.  I saved them.

We all need our moments to breathe and find peace.  Search for what makes you happy and use it to care for yourself.   Your self-care is your escape.  Use it and grow from it.  It will save you.