What, no rainbows?
I was hoping to wake up on this first day of 2019 with a smile, rainbows shooting through the window and sprays of confetti, (hooray, it’s a new year. whoo-hoo, 365 days to do it right) but instead I woke up screaming and crying from a nightmare saddled with a crick in my neck and a headache.
I reflected on my New Year’s Eve and began to process last night’s clearing ceremony where I burned (literally – see featured photo) away all the things I don’t wish to carry with me into 2019. Apparently, my subconscious started processing all the stuff while I was asleep.
The Dog Remedy Approach
Anyway, forging ahead and being the positive person that I am, I made a pot of coffee and thought, “All I need is a long walk outside with my dog. It’s warm and sunny. Let’s get rid of this physical manifestation.”
I walked the dog for 40 minutes. It was hot and the sun hurt my eyes and the jarring of the walk made my head hurt even more and I cried.
The Holistic Approach
I considered taking a few ibuprofen, but instead, I decided to go holistic and I pulled out my yoga mat, incense and singing bowl. I flipped to the yoga station on Pandora and round and round the Pandora logo went. No wi-fi. I took a deep breath, flicked the wifi slider off and back on. Waited. No wi-fi. I restarted my phone and wondered what I would do for music with no wi-fi. I decided to do yoga without music and my patience was running thin. I turned my phone back on and after I “forgot” the network and “remembered” it again, my wi-fi sprang to life.
Meanwhile, my dog sprawled on my yoga mat cleaning his paws. I said, “Eli, get off the mat” and he looked at me like, “yoga mats are for dogs too” Lick.
The yoga session went well. “Nowhere to go. Nowhere to be” was today’s mantra. The next thing I knew an hour had passed and I was lying in savasana. I gave myself 5 minutes for meditation. I was successful for approximately 30 seconds until I decided to be finished and turned over on my side to push myself up. I hesitated, closed my eyes and watched the swirling colors behind my eyelids. God, I hope everyone has swirling colors. If not, then I’m certifiably mad. My main swirly was a deep magenta. I concentrated on my magenta and managed to go deep (with no intrusions) for at least two minutes. Success! Hip openers and twists are the perfect medicine for muscle tightness and I felt relaxed, but my headache was worse.
The Modern Medicine Approach
My holistic approach worked to a lesser degree than I anticipated, so I sucked it up and downed 3 ibuprofen. And 20 minutes later the pain edged off.
In an effort to put the good things in my pocket and throw out the bad things from 2018; I decided to take a stress inventory to assess where I sit on the “stress” spectrum. The following is taken from the Holmes Rahe Social Readjustment Rating Scale. You get points for certain stressors. The scale assumes a time period of 12 months. In this instance, racking up points isn’t the goal.
Here we go!
- Divorce or ending long-term relationship (12+ yrs.) ~ 73 pts.
- Death of close family member other than parent (step-brother) ~ 63 pts.
- Death of close family member other than parent (pet) ~ 63 pts.
- Change in financial state ~38 pts.
- Change in living condition ~ 24 pts.
- Change in working hours/condition ~ 20 pts.
- Change in residence ~ 20 pts.
My Score: 301
300 & up: Major Life Crisis; 80% chance of stress-related illness
The Growth Approach
About 1/3 of stressors on my list were self-imposed. Although the points still dropped for the things I made happen, I was also hyper mentally prepared for them, ergo not as stressful. I had to disrupt my life in order to orchestrate great change and growth. The focus now is how I choose to react to my stressors. I choose to tend to my new garden of friends, relationships and goals and balance them (as well as I can) with smiles, love, wit, careful thought before I speak, exercise, meditation, money management, simple living and clean eating (not all the time because that’s boring).
And biggest of all, forgiving myself.
It’s OK to have a less than stellar day even if it is New Years especially after the shit show that was my 2018.
All the things ~