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One more thing for the ring.

Sunday, August 26, 2018

It's that constant fight we have in our heads between "Ya did good girl" and "you can do better girl." I'd like to pave a path for myself to the land called peace between the two.

Right now is day 1 of my empty nest. It's eerily quiet. The Kentucky Wildcat t-shirts and size 13 shoes that are usually strewn all over have been replaced by the clutter of thoughts of a girl who hasn't quite found her dang way at 45. I found my thought swaying over waves of regret for yesterday and excitement for tomorrow. And super unsettled in today.

Living in the space of today and in perfect peace is kind of like living in a house with no roof. The problem is seasons call for adjustments. Most of the time, we make those adjustments by learning from mistakes of the past, and then planning and preparing for the road ahead based on those lessons. The right now gets lost in the process. I recognize there's a certain wisdom to that process, and a trap to it as well.

UP to this point, I have battled between regret and hope, past and future. And when my kids both flew the coop, I was in the ring with what felt like punches form everywhere. I needed a stool, a corner, a crew and some water poured over my eyes. I needed to know I had legs under me to stand on. I was sorely tempted to count myself out, throw in the towel in panic about the rounds ahead of me, and be angry with myself. And here's where Spark people know what I am talking about; nothing in my fridge was going to help me escape this moment. Truth is, escape isn't what I needed.

I recently came upon a YouTuber who is a bit foul mouthed, and a little risqué in their subject matter. But, being high in openness, I indulged and found some nuggets of wisdom right there in the midst of a pile of rubbish that had a faint Axe body wash mixed with his Grandma's lavender scented shelf liners smell. It was like walking in a closet you've been avoiding only to find the thing you've been looking for forever. I just love it when that happens.

This whippersnapper encouraged me to sit inside difficult emotions in a way I haven't heard before. He managed to add an unexpected layer to putting thoughts to paper as s form of therapy. The suggestion was to name the emotion of anger, anxiety, fear, or whatever, then, slow and deliberately observing and journaling the physical sensations, rather than directing your focus to the cause and asking why, why, why? It's amazing the tightness in my shoulders and the stiffness of my jaw. The thumping in my temple of the dull ache in my chest. These physical sensations were now a reminder to me that my physical body liked to mix them all together, make sense of them and call them something I should be trying to avoid. It was amazing to feel them dissipate and my mood lighten. I have no idea the validity of this practice in some professional form of therapy, but my goodness, it helped me.

Slowly, but surely, I was able to see, stand up and re-enter the ring. No doubt this is not the end of that swell of victory and agony of defeat life will throw my way, but I am truly grateful to have on more tool in the arsenal to bring with me into the ring.

Fight on! Spark on!

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