Care is defined as: “Verb: look after and provide for the needs of.”
As a mother, partner, businesswoman, birth worker, community member...I do a lot for other people. I am a caretaker and provider for my family and household. I am a doula and support person for birthing clients and their families. I am a writer and creative contributor for other businesses. I am a friend and confidant to the people I love. I am a yogi that seeks to support the overall well being of others within the community.
I focus a lot of my daily attention on taking care of others. Making their health and safety a priority so I can help them grow and thrive. The caveat to being a caregiver is the need to balance that desire to help others with my own needs. This requires balance. Finding a middle ground. Finding a space in between. Keeping harmony within the out and in, yin and yang of life and how we manage our energy.
In meditation and yoga, balance is a foundational pillar of practice. Finding your physical balance and anchoring into a space is grounding. We root ourselves into the earth when we take time to stop and connect our mind, body, and soul together. When we make it a practice and a ritual to sit within ourselves we are honoring our body and soul’s need for balance. It’s important to take pause and step away from the chaos of a fast paced world and dedicate a few moments a day to re-centering ourselves. Make it a priority to sit each day in a space of quiet meditation and breathing.
Just as the reservoirs of lakes recede and replenish through drought and rain, we need to do the same for ourselves. Once a vessel is emptied, it can be restored and filled once again. When working within an environment where we are constantly giving of ourselves, we need to make it a priority to take time to restore and replenish ourselves. Being a caretaker can be depleting. We see it in teachers, nurses, mothers, doctors, and those in the field of health and rehabilitation. By the end of a long day of caring for others, we feel exhausted emotionally and physically from giving so much of ourselves. That’s why taking time to care for ourselves is so important. Without that balance of give and take we will burn ourselves out and be of no use to anyone.
I have suffered through several episodes of exhaustion over this past year. Moments of complete and total fatigue and physical depletion that lead to doctor visits and blood tests to rule out something wrong. I was taking on too much and was overwhelmed with too many responsibilities and demands on myself physically and mentally. I didn’t recognize that I was burning myself out and running myself into the ground. I was also recovering from pandemic fatigue which is a real thing. Taking care of my mental health is just as important as my physical health, if not more important! Finding ways to unwind the tension that took over my physique during the pandemic has been a slow process of healing and recovery. Listening to my body was key! Sleeping when I’m tired. Eating when I’m hungry. Being mindful of my water consumption. Finding space away from my kids. Getting outside for fresh air, sunlight, gardening, and exercise. Reading books for fun. Saying no to others so I can say yes to myself. And sometimes simply telling others.... “I’m done talking now. This quiet feels good and I want to enjoy it!”
Two years of living in fight or flight with no indicator of when a sense of normalcy and routine would resume burned people out. No one really talks about it because we’re still living in the haze of it all waiting for the other shoes to drop. Fear of a deadly virus, lockdown from social society, feeling disconnected and trapped for two years is a mental health crisis that we all need to recognize and honor. Mothers and caretakers of children through the pandemic can tell you that the last two years has been like living in the newborn stage nonstop! Blowouts, sleep deprivation, food prep, multitasking... sound familiar? I think all of us deserve some huge recognition for stepping up and being the badass mamas that we are . We kept our families safe and maintained some sense of order during such an uncertain time of chaos. I see you!
Please take care of yourself. You deserve that same care and attention for yourself that you give to others. Find a balance with the give and take. Relish in the wholeness you feel when you take that time for yourself. Honor yourself. Enjoy saying no to others in order to say yes to yourself.
Peace and Love,
September 22, 2022 - Newsletter 008