Wednesday, September 14, 2011

What Do You do for YOU?

"I can't see you... I'm losing my vision."
Those were the panicked words that a friend of mine, Marisa, managed to stutter one day while I was visiting with her. Knowing that she is a victim of Stargardt's Disease, I was immediately worried, and my heart was breaking. I knew this meant that Marisa could be going blind.
After visiting with the doctor, Marisa was informed that she may have had a mini stroke. The doctor asked her if she was under any stress and Marisa answered honestly; she was under a tremendous amount of stress.
Marisa told me about her visit a few days later and said, "My doctor told me that I need to take an hour every day to do something for me, even if it's simply taking a walk."
I agreed, "Well you have to, Marisa."
She asked, "What do you do for you?"
My response? "...Nothing."
Nothing. Isn't that what many of us do for ourselves? We get up and get ready for work; get the kids dressed and take them to the sitter or send them to school; spill our coffee on ourselves as we speed to the office; put our eight hours (sometimes more) in; pick up the kids; cook dinner; wash the dishes; do the laundry; walk the dog; take out the trash; give the kids a bath; clean the house...
So when do we really have the time to take an hour out of our busy schedules for ourselves? It may seem like we don't, but we do; we just don't allow ourselves to sit down for an hour and read a book or take a drive in the country.
There are 24 hours in a day, and we all seem to shove as many things as we can into them, without any regards to ourselves. But one day it all catches up with us, doesn't it?
For Marisa, her wake up call was having a possible stroke. Now, Marisa goes to the gym for an hour a day and accomplishes so much: she relieves stress, renews her energy level, and feels good mentally, emotionally and physically. For others, wake up calls come to too late, when they're 80 years old and realize that they spent all of their time making a life for themselves that they forgot to enjoy their family and friends, the beauty of a sunset, the smell of baked apple pie.
So rather than rushing through everything and planning meeting on top of errand on top of chore, we need to slow down, relax, and yes, "smell the roses." If we can stay at work for an extra three or four hours, surely we can find an hour a day to sit on the porch and drink tea or go for a walk at the park.
So what do I do for me? Recently, lots of things. I realized that life is for living, and to live, you must love. So I am doing all of the things I love to do, sometimes for more than an hour a day.
I come home from work and crawl around on the floor with my 16-month-old son. I hop in bed and read a good book or do logic puzzles. I watch movies and drink homemade strawberry smoothies with my husband. I drink wine with my girlfriends. I write. I love. I live.
Today in particular, I took an hour to myself and had my first massage. And believe me when I say, it was amazing. Hot towels; a soft, warm bed; candle light; quiet music... Incredibly relaxing. How nice it would be to indulge in a massage every day for an hour!


Anonymous said...

BRAVO! Glad to see you're back, and it's really good!

Sarah D. said...

You inspire me :) love u and miss u....this one have me some serenity just reading it :)

Marisa B. said...

Love, love, love it! God is soooo happy with you Sarah and so am I. You have a true gift and talent and I just know that it is going to be used for the good. YOU inspire me!

Candy M. said...

Awesome Sarah!