You may be thinking,
So, her world has been crazy, chaotic, and demanding, hmm? Full of extra labor, less sleep, more obligations, and new worries?! Ha! MY life is at LEAST that nuts!
And you're probably right. We each have our limits, our coping mechanisms, and our recovery needs. My story isn't told in order to make you feel sorry for me- indeed, I hesitate to write often to avoid such a trap. Rather, I just want to document what's helped me and what hasn't, to offer you hope and inspiration in your times of chaos.
Some days I need nourishment, some days I need pep, and some days I need help just finding the front door. I will detail the choices I made to get through, including supplements (herbal and elemental), food and hydration, and self care.
The first thing I want to mention, the most important thing you might say, is this:
Rest and Forgiveness are Essential
Allowing yourself time to rest seems to take away time you should be spending doing the work that's looming over you, right?
Two things about that statement are wrong wrong wrong.
One, Spoon Theory. When you're chronically overloaded for months or years, you're just not operating with as many spoons as you used to, nor as many as others expect you to have. And you can't just borrow against tomorrow's, that quickly ends in disaster. Massive ongoing stress can act like a chronic disease, so we need to allow for, and provide for, healing.
Second is that dirty word, "should". WHO SAYS what you should be doing? TV, magazines, bossy coworkers, nosy "friends", demanding family? Of course not. Who could know what you need better than you? There's lots of noise in the world telling you to feel badly about yourself, and learning to tune it out can be a real challenge.
But forgiving yourself, ridding yourself of guilt and shame, allowing yourself to be who and what you are right now today is so important. Believe me, saying a genuine "No, thanks" to someone else's criticism, no matter how kindly meant, (and it usually IS kindly meant, that's the worst part) is liberating!
I am working on practicing self forgiveness when I do my morning meditations. Resting- well, I've got that down! But I know some people who have such a personal taboo against something as restorative as an afternoon nap. It gets me through the rest of my day and evening, so if it's going to help you too, go for it!
Tonight I went outside during my favorite time of day- the gloaming, when "there's hardly no day, nor hardly no night. There's things half in shadow, and halfway in light."
I thought about to-do lists, and things I want to write to you, and about how wonderful it is to be able to pull a few weeds and talk to bunny rabbits and catch a lightning bug and just sit in the perfect, summer air.
There's a perfect man-in-the-moon crescent in the sky with a haze around him, promising a perfectly miserable day tomorrow with the Northeast trifecta, Hazy, Hot and Humid.
And there's good red wine and cool water waiting inside, and fans and open windows glorying in each breeze.
So tonight I wish you peace and coolness. There's time enough for writing meaningful things, tomorrow.
Happy Solstice, friends!
The Summer Solstice marks the beginning of the summer season here, which is usually synonymous with beach vacations, bug bites, grilling, and lots of complaining about the heat :D
To me, though, Solstice marks a different, big energy shift. It's time to settle in, settle down, and ride it out. I have the sense that summertime is out of my hands. There's so much fire energy that all I can do is observe and enjoy it, and do little things around the edges to prepare for Autumn. It's a time for Being.
This is particularly relevant for me this year. The last two months have been momentous and will go down in my personal history as some of the most important times in my life. See, I quit my job! Sort of, that is.
For over 7 years I owned a pilates studio franchise that I've been struggling with since, oh, since I became the owner, for a variety of personal and professional reasons. Finally, though, I was able to come to terms with one big realization- I don't like being a business owner. I had to face that idea, accept it, and learn to remove the guilt and other pressures that say owning a business is the height of wonderfulness. After I worked through all that, all sorts of connections I thought I had suddenly became meaningless.
And just as suddenly, the universe aligned and things started happening for me. I found a new home for my pilates clients in a matter of days, after I've been searching for YEARS! Helpful people arrived unasked in my life, from customer service angels to friends bearing generous and well-timed gifts. I even won an online giveaway from one of the bloggers I follow, Philly's own Marisa McClellan.
Just like that, BOOM, I moved my pilates machines, closed the studio, shut down the old website, handed in my lease termination, and quit the franchise. Then I laughed and cried and laughed like a bad movie about crazy people!
It's been a month since starting my new position at Wholistic Fitness in North Wales PA. And I gotta say, I love working for them! Much of the transition chaos is behind me and I'm beginning to settle in, settle down, and begin my new adventures. Several times I've started to say I feel like a new person and stopped, because really I feel like my Old Self again but it's been so long since I've seen her that I've forgotten what she looked like. I am SO. HAPPY.
I apologize for being silent here for the last few months, but I couldn't write anything except blow-by-blows of what was happening to and around me. But now, for the first time as an adult I feel free, on the edge of an expansive abyss of potential that shows me glimpses of tantalizing futures. I'm so excited to move into what Deepak Chopra calls "the field of all possibilities" and finding out where I go.
Several years ago I read a story about a wise woman who, responding to a query about how she got on her personal path, said "But the path is always beneath your feet!" I've held onto that ever since, to the idea that even though I wasn't where I wanted to be I was still on my path. Now, suddenly, instead of being weedy and buggy and full of rabbit holes and fallen branches, I made a turn and found a well-groomed path, twisty and full of surprises but bordered by welcoming trees and covered by a cheerful sky. There's the path, and then there's The Path.
I don't know if I was looking for the wrong thing all those years, or if it simply wasn't the right time, but whatever changed this past Spring has been fabulous. I want to say Thank You for everyone who has helped me get here. I am so enjoying my Now, and I can't wait to see what's Next!
Fun Fact: I'm an herbalist and a movement coach. Not a doctor, or a pharmacist, and not pretending to be one on TV.
This is a public space, so my writing reflects my experiences and I try to stay general enough so it might relate to you. This does not constitute medical advice, and I encourage you to discuss concerns with your doctor. Remember, however, that the final say in your wellness decisions are always yours- you have the power to choose, you are the boss of you.
And, some of my posts may contain affiliate links. If you make a purchase through them I'll earn a few cents. Thank you for supporting my work.
This website is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not medical, mental health or healthcare advice. The information presented here is not intended to diagnose, treat, heal, cure or prevent any illness, medical condition or mental or emotional condition. Working with us is not a guarantee of any results. Paula Billig owns all copyrights to the materials presented here unless otherwise noted.