Recharging the Batteries

I’m struggling in this moment. Every second of my day is so crammed-full of responsibilities that I feel suffocated. As a mother (and a stay-at-home mother at that) much of my daily energy is on loan to my two children. I wake up for them, I cook, clean, sing, dance and think (mostly) for them. This is not a ground-breaking realization but just a reality and one that I enjoy most days. Regardless, at the end of the day I sometimes have to remind myself that I deserve some of my energy, too… and so I shower.

From the week I brought my first child home from the hospital I secretly declared the shower my sanctuary. If only for 10 minutes a day I was going to stand in that stall alone with nothing but a flimsy curtain to shut the world out. For that short time I was going to allow myself to be by myself both physically and mentally and not feel one ounce of guilt.

This week husband is sick; a flu-like, viral thing of some kind. He’s been home from work for two days and although his body is here, he is more gone than on a regular day. I am left to do it all without the help he gives in the evenings. In addition to our normal day-to-day things, we are leaving for a long weekend in the mountains tomorrow and I was responsible for all the packing involved in that as well. I know this is a very temporary problem, but still, the weight of it is heavy in the moment.

After eleven hours straight of domesticity and non-stop, energy-sucking child-rearing and FOR GOD’S SAKE THE PACKING on top of it! (We are only going for three measly days to the mountains that are AN HOUR away– with all the stuff I packed you’d think we were going to the Himalayans!) After all that, I needed a shower in the worst way. Tonight, while basking in my ten minutes of aloneness I got down on my knees and did a modified child’s pose. I stayed there until the water ran cold.

I closed my eyes and forced myself to bring my mind into the present moment. I’m not very good at this, but the practice feels good. For a moment I thought the water felt like warm rain on my back. I pretended it was rain from a waterfall. I opened my mouth and let it rim my lips as it poured down my face. I listened to my breath. I listened to the water fall into my ears and hit the porcelain tub all around me. I pretended they were rocks. I don’t know how long I was there but when I got up I was dizzy and my feet were numb. Those few minutes of focusing on the present were enough to make me feel recharged and ready to complete my responsibilities for this day which meant one more child’s bath and bedtime routine. I took one last deep breath and turned off the water. As I did, I heard my son whine while he woke up from his last nap. Here we go.

Do you have something small you do everyday to recharge?


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