Good Wednesday morning to this precious crew! I just went back and reread Chapter 18 in Breathing Room, and I felt as though the words were for me . . . all over again . . . today. Because isn’t it true that learning to be compassionate to ourselves is a practice. It’s something we must wake up every day and choose to do. It’s a way we decide to live. It’s even a skill we hone. We learn what it looks like to tend to ourselves instead of tear into ourselves. This is often counterintuitive.
This is the time of year when even our nurtured practices can come off the rails because everything gains speed, intensity, significance. In these final months of the year, we can become insane with our expectations of ourselves. We can forget what we spend the entire year forging — a new relationship with ourselves.
This line hit me right between the eyes this morning:
Isn’t it amazing what we will do at our own expense.
And this one:
I will never take a good enough Butt Picture. Ever. If my insides are hurting and unattended, there isn’t a Butt Picture in the universe that will make it all better. Not one. That is possibly the most profound truth I know.
If you haven’t read the chapter, then you don’t have context for the Butt Picture. It’s a super embarrassing story, but I included it because I knew I’m not the only one who does insane things that I think will motivate me. Things that only end up shaming me.
My desire would be to travel through these weeks with my soul intact. To be able to see my children. To be able to hear the music. To be able to feel the story. To be able to ingest all the beauty in all its forms.
Maybe I’ll write those words “Isn’t it amazing what we will do at our own expense” and put them somewhere I will see them often. So as I’m making plans and decisions this season, I’ll remember the plans and decisions don’t have to happen at my expense. Because if I’m buried, I will not be able to see. I will not be able to hear. I will not be able to feel.
How have you begun to care for yourself as you would a friend instead of an enemy?
How have you been nurturing yourself as a mother would her child?
How have you become a companion to yourself instead of a critic?
How do these practices impact your holiday season?
With love and more love,