Tuesday was my birthday. I love my birthday and I am sure many of you like yours too. Mine is in October. If I am lucky the weather is just turning a little more crisp, the leaves are changing and there is a sense that the school year is back in swing. We are in a period of renewed self-awareness, at least I always am because the Jewish High Holidays also often occur on or near my birthday.
This year, I decided to spend the entire day doing personal Self Care. A friend of mine recently wrote a booklet about self-care and for anyone who is a parent especially a mom, you know that often times we take care of everyone else and sometimes forget to take care of ourselves. So I chose to spend the day at a yoga class, getting a massage — yes, I have finally established with my husband that massage is not just a luxury but truly is a way to help maintain our health and wellbeing — and finally in the evening my husband and I attended a cooking class/supper club with two local Oregon chefs that I have admired for years. The cooking classes were something I had wanted to do but had never prioritized doing before.
In my 20’s, it would have all been about the party. I would have wanted lots of people and a celebration, but in my 40’s I am beginning to realize that I love my own company and spending a day with many hours in a quiet reflective space is just fine with me. In fact, it’s what I purposely chose to do for this birthday. The morning affirmation at yoga that day was, “In stillness I find my inner strength.” I think with our smart phone, 24/7 lives we sometimes lose sight of the fact that quiet time is not just a luxury it provides sanity and centering. It’s amazing to me that as I age I am gaining wisdom I didn’t expect and it’s a powerful thing.
Don’t wait until your birthday to do some self-care. Take some deep breaths, commune with nature and give yourself some reflective time with your own thoughts. It’s one of the best gifts we can give ourselves.