It has been a few months since the last time I sat down to write. Between working, volunteering, building friendships and a brand new life, as well as spending time with my new husband of less than a year, I often fall into bed at the end of the day without rolling out my mat or even taking a minute for myself.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not complaining about any of the above, I feel very blessed for all that I have been able to do and experience since arriving on the west coast… I only wish there were more hours in the day so I could fit it all in without feeling stretched so thin.
As I settle into an evening of yoga, quiet time, and a delicious glass of wine, I realize how simple it is to rejuvenate but am disappointed by how irregularly I have been prioritizing this time. Maybe my tendency to get caught up in the busyness of the day-to-day comes from missing my old life back east, or perhaps it comes from wanting to please others by not saying “no.” Regardless, if I am truly going to enjoy this life and all the blessings it entails, I need to carve out time in order to be present and truly grateful for it.
Writer Lysa Terkeurst says that “Today’s choices become tomorrow’s circumstances.” And so I ask, if we don’t choose to care for ourselves today, how are we going to keep up with tomorrow? Or next month? Or next year? It can be as simple as a mindful breath, as long as we choose the moment with intention to rejuvenate and regain our capacity to live to the fullest.
It’s amazing the amount of rejection that I see
In my reflection and I can’t get out of the way
I’m lookin’ forward to the girl I wanna be
But regret has a way of starin’ me right in the face
So I try not to waste too much time at the bathroom sink
– Miranda Lambert (Bathroom Sink)
There are days when I get home after work and the tension in my shoulders feel like rocks and I realize that I haven’t taken a deep breath all day. Instead of listening to my inner voice, I have spent the whole day compromising myself for a mere perception of others’ opinions of me or worse, my ego’s expectations. It’s as though the world speeds up all around me and I’m constantly criticizing myself for being behind or not good enough.
This morning I started my day with a yoga class instead of my regular cup of coffee. I usually don’t have the luxury of making it to the 6 am Bikram class since I have to be at work by 8:30 am. But today I was scheduled for a late start, which meant I got to contend with the inner battle of whether to sleep in or go to yoga. I am grateful that the yoga won, for as I starred at myself in the mirror for the 90 minute class, I realized that I had been holding a lot of negativity towards the girl looking back at me.
With my mind always trying to skip 10 steps ahead of right now, I am never able to live up to my ego’s criticisms of where she thinks I should be. This made me realize that there is an important caveat to the saying, “Be True To Who You Are,” for it is really a practice of being true to who you are in this moment. It is about getting to know the person you are within your own individual context, not where you will be tomorrow, next month, or next year. Honour who you are in the present and have respect for the moment, whether good or bad.
Yes I have goals, and as Miranda says, “I’m lookin’ forward to the girl I wanna be;” however, that doesn’t mean I can forget to take care of the girl I already am.