In your absence, I am thinking about you and your needs.
I know that sometimes you just want to talk. I know that I am sometimes the only person in your week who will give you a two hours of uninterrupted time and attention toward your needs. That’s how we go through our lives these days. Well, all the way up until about two weeks ago.
At first, we were stopped dead in our tracks. We were forced to drop what we were doing to take it all in. People in China getting sick changed our lives. Do you see how people we’ve never even thought about, are now snapping our heads in their direction? We are intertwined. We pretend that we are not. We separate ourselves. We go so far as to criticize and loathe the people whom we’ve never met, giving them more negative attention than positive attention to our own beloveds, right here in front of us. In turn, they are forcing us to stop and pay positive attention.
Our families are being forced together. The time we are spending with them is intense. We are limited in how we can physically, emotionally, and mentally distance ourselves. It’s a lot. This is why it’s important to take breaks from the people around us. The incessant noise, nonverbal communication, thoughts of what we “should” be doing, and relentless questioning from children asking us the very same questions we want answered. Interruptions are the death of all creativity.
Take timeouts from your family. Have a family quiet time just to regroup and be still. Then at night, send everyone to bed at a reasonable hour. Who cares what they do in their rooms? As long as they think they have to be sneaky to do what they want to do, they will not disturb you. Set school hours. Give them more than enough time because you have to factor in the time they spend procrastinating on other websites or making snacks. Maybe a couple of those hours will be after dark so you can all enjoy outdoors activities. Create time for them to do chores so that they are giving something back to the home environment and understand their important place on the team. Set time for exercise as a family. Dodge ball for the more frustrating days…
During your personal quiet time, breathe. Stop thinking you have to be doing something, whether it’s productive, or a distraction from thoughts of productivity. Just sit. Notice how it smells, how your clothes feel against your skin, the sound of your breath, or the nature outside of your window. This is meditation. If you keep looking at the dust bunnies under the dresser, you’d better close your eyes.
Lie down on the floor and relax your body. I promise you this is productive. Put a pillow under your knees and a rolled towel under your neck. Open your palms to receive the energy around you. Flip them down to ground yourself. Maybe your brain has been flitting all over the place with the constant change and understanding of our new world. Brace yourself here and breathe.
Once you find a slight sense of calm, do a mental body scan, starting with our head, imagining a colored laser light leaving relaxation in its wake. Notice what feels stuck. Pause at these places to focus harder on letting go. Maybe it needs movement or stretching. Maybe it needs rubbing. Maybe just breathing into it. Keep tennis balls and your foam roller nearby for extra help.
I realize that this ruins my job security. I’m teaching you to do what I do for you. For those of you who say you don’t do yoga, this is yoga.
See you soon.