Words into Action: Self Care for the Holidays

As I write this blog, I’m tucked away in our bedroom, salt lamp glowing, wool socks on and hot tea on the nightstand.  We’re in full winter mode at our house.   

My intention was to write a blog showcasing a recipe that helps to reduce stress. What I found was that logistically figuring out how to do that in the midst of my holiday to do’s (cook the recipe, take pictures, write the recipe, write the blog and post…) was stressing me out!

I’m in charge of pretty much all of the holiday happenings here at our house.  Decorating, gifts, holiday cards, Christmas cookies, holiday meals and dishes for family gatherings…I know there are so many of you out there who hear me on this.  Ezra’s birthday also falls in December, which adds to the fun ☺.  This is all on top of the every day happenings at home and with the café and the farm.  So, I decided to practice the advice I give for this time of year.  Slow the F down.  

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I’ve slowly taken measures to make space for self-care since having our second baby and I’ve noticed some things.  At first, I felt guilty.  I’m really getting in the sauna for the third time this week?  “Yes. Yes I am,” my higher self would say.  

Am I really getting a massage in the midst of this crazy holiday season?!  “Why yes you are, and you should be getting a WEEKLY massage for all you do and for what your body has gone through in the past year!”  (This was my higher self talking again.  I love her by the way.)

Slowly but surely, the guilt is melting away.  I can hand over the baby and say with zero guilt to my hubby  “I’m doing yoga for the next 30 minutes.  See you then.”  

(By the way, my partner and husband is amazingly supportive and even though I don’t talk about it in this blog, he is a PARTNER to me in every way in running our home and raising our kids.)

The alternative for me was not doing these things that my body and soul really needed and not being okay.  And when I’m not okay, I cannot support my family or anyone else the way I want and need to.  It’s that simple.  It’s not a cliché, it’s reality.  

I NEED TO MOVE MY BODY DAILY.  I NEED TO SWEAT.  I NEED QUIET TIME.  I NEED TO NOURISH MYSELF WITH HERBAL TEAS AND HEALING FOODS.  I F-ING NEED TO CARE FOR MYSELF.  

So, what I am experiencing since having our second child 8 months ago is this.  The little girl inside of me is growing up.  She’s stepping into her womanhood full force as the last of my Maiden chapter falls away.  I’m in full MOTHER mode in my life and I freaking love it. I ask for what I need.  I take care of myself.  I stop making excuses and replace those past excuses with action. Wasting my time on people who waste my time?  Forget it. There is no longer time for that.  The old me would wince at those words. The me now understands that compassion for people includes not allowing them to shit on you.  True story.  

So, I still have all the stuff to take care of for the holiday season. The gifts, the cards, the meals…but it looks different now.  I’m making much easier meals.  I’m asking for people to bring a dish to the gathering.  I’m keeping the gifts simple.  And in the midst of it all, I’m practicing self-care like a boss. Baths, massages, sauna, yoga…all of it.  And it feels amazing.  And my family is happy and content and the house is peaceful.  And I can give more and love more to those I care about and to my community. 

As it turns out this was the real message I needed to send out.  The recipe will have to wait.  

I encourage you to take what works for you from my message and apply it to your life as you see fit.   Only YOU know what you need.  

Merry Christmas, Happy Winter Solstice and Peace to you.

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In Gratitude,
Audrey