I promised I’d let you know how sailing went. It was delightful! We had a pretty calm day so we drifted back and forth across the Mississippi River at Lake Pepin. Three middle-aged women in the middle of nowhere on a perfect day just chatting was exactly the right way to treat myself to a “time out”.
That was the whole point of going sailing, to take a real “time out” and do something fun just for me. I had the whole day so the hour and a half drive down and back was not rushed. We saw eagles and turkey vultures flying over the bluffs around the river. It was a lazy day, but a stimulating one. I love being on the water. It relaxes me in a way that nothing else can.
I haven’t really been sailing. I’ve been on a catamaran on the ocean. I’ve been in canoes. I’ve been in motor boats and pontoon boats. I’ve always wanted to sail. There’s something about the water and the wind that appeals to my sense of imagination. It seems like there’s a freedom in sailing. The potential is there for speed, but also quiet.
We spent all afternoon on the water. When we came back to the marina and got the boat put away for the evening I felt I’d made a new friend in Captain Beth. My first words ashore were, “Can we do it again!?”
I think it’s important for all of us to treat ourselves on occasion. Sometimes that’s a quiet solitary retreat. Sometimes that’s trying something new and challenging. Sometimes that’s making a dream come true. Whatever it is I am starting to be more aware of things that actually feed my soul. I’m starting to prioritize making those things happen for me more frequently.
It’s challenging to do things “just for me.” I’m finding it’s also very worth the effort.
The wheel of the year keeps turning and I’m still running to catch up. I starting the morning with, “What do you mean it’s already Monday again?!?” The leaves are finally starting to turn, about two weeks behind. I’m feeling about two weeks behind as well. Unfortunately, my schedule isn’t.
Sometimes when things are this hectic, and there is no end to the hectic in sight the best thing to do is actually to stop. Take a moment and breathe. Give myself permission to simply be present and grateful and still. Setting a timer is sometimes a necessary component in this formula. If I don’t set the alarm I spend the time worrying about how much time I’m taking. If I do set a timer I can trust that it will go off and I will move on.
So let’s take a minute (no really, one minute) and breathe together…..
Take a deep breath in
Let it out with a long exhale
Take another deep breath, slowing it down just a little
And simply let it slowly release
Let’s be in our bodies, simply allowing the experience we are experiencing. Noticing where we are in space. Noticing what does or doesn’t hurt. Not correcting, or compensating but simply accepting what is. Let’s be in our bodies.
Let’s open our hearts to gratitude. Today, in this moment I am grateful for taking a breath. I am grateful for the friends who are lending a hand this week. I am grateful for the family that is pitching in or simply making space in their lives for me. I am grateful to be up and moving and writing and continuing forward with my plans. I am grateful for all of the people who take time to share this moment with me, in their own time. I am grateful for all the bounty in my life.
Take a deep breath in
Let it out long and slowly