Be Gentle with Yourself

Ever have a day where you feel paralyzed? You can’t focus? You’re just stuck? I’m having one of those days.

I should have been ecstatic about today. The kids are in school and my husband went into work at the office and I had a rare day all to myself. It should have been a productive day and a motivated day, but it wasn’t. Today I was stuck with thoughts rolling over and over in my mind that I couldn’t let go.

After the house was quiet, I was supposed to do yoga, as is my routine, instead I went back to bed and slept for two hours and then scrolled Facebook for an hour after that. A friend texted me that she was dropping something off. I asked her to leave it on the step because at that time of day how could I justify still being in bed? However, that interaction got me out of bed and in the shower. I’ll do yoga after a shower… I didn’t. My mind kept wandering off to Netflix and Jane the Virgin. I’ve been slowly re-watching the series. It’s silly and light and makes me laugh. I have a strict rule about never watching TV during the day… that’s a slippery slope. My eyes wandered past the terracotta-pot lighthouse I need to fix up for my fairy garden. It’s been waiting two weeks for me to make time. If I fix the lighthouse, I can watch Jane. Maybe I just need a quiet creative day. Maybe I should just TAKE a quiet creative day.

And so… I did. And it took a lot to push that guilt away. I broke my no TV rule.Four episodes later, I was finished the lighthouse. In the middle there somewhere I cleaned the kitchen, loaded the dishwasher, washed some dishes by hand, and put in two loads of laundry. And I did a little research on the history of Buddhism too, you know, cuz my brain wandered off with curiousity. I think about studying this evening to keep the guilt at bay, but there’s dogs to walk, supper to make, and the new episode of The Falcon and The Winter Soldier is a Friday night thing around here, so I guess we’ll see.

I decided not to be hard on myself. I can look at my day and know that things were accomplished, just not the things I thought would be when I went to bed last night.

And that’s okay. (Read that last sentence again.) I’m okay. I actually feel better now then I did this morning. Taking the quiet day and doing what I wanted without passing judgment on myself (or at least pushing it to the side) was the right thing to do. For the last long while my brain has been full beyond capacity, overwhelmed and sometimes I worry that I’m going to stop functioning all together. My mantra has become “be gentle with yourself.” And when I feel overwhelmed or so tired, my brain goes foggy, I remind myself it’s okay, be gentle, listen to your body, and this too shall pass.

It’s okay to take a day for yourself. Be gentle with yourself.

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