This Summer I went on a retreat. It was pretty awesome.
I didn't talk about it a lot. For a lot of different reasons, but one of the biggest was that it was a very spiritual experience, and there is a level of privacy that I want to maintain about it. It was special. It was important. It was for me.
I immediately developed a relationship with the caretakers of this place, and the wife of the duo cared for me as though I was her own daughter. She was loving and nurturing and wonderful. She knew things about me that I hadn't even recognized about myself. It was kind of amazing.
One of the things we talked about was my writing. She felt, very strongly, that my life's calling was supposed to be writing (it's interesting to note that she had absolutely zero idea about this blog or that I'd written a book or anything about any other writing I've ever done. She just knew). We talked about this at length, and one of the things I told her was that I felt like my blog had become negative. I didn't like it.
Granted, I write about my life. I suffer from depression. That's true and that's honest. I don't like it, but the truth often sucks. I go to therapy. I take medication. I still have depression. It's not because I'm weak, although I often feel that way. It's not something I should be ashamed of, although I sometimes am. It's just a part of me, the same as my green eyes, the same as my giving heart, the same as my size eleven feet. I'm sometimes ashamed of those too.
The caretaker encouraged me to write about the good in my life. I've not done enough of that. So today, I wanted to let you know what's right about me and my life. Today I won't focus as much on the negative. I might focus on the negative tomorrow, no promises, but for today, here's what's right.
1) My therapist
I've been seeing my therapist for many months now. She's pretty much completely fabulous.
I struggled with her at first, to be honest. She pushes me in directions that I'm not always completely comfortable with. I wanted to talk endlessly about the past and she wanted me to focus on right now. I expressed my frustration with her one day and she said something like, "We have to get you to a point that your anxiety and depression doesn't take over every single second of your life RIGHT NOW before we can deal with your past." It made complete sense. She makes sense. She gives me homework. She's supportive and encouraging and helps me see things in different ways. It's also a bonus that the office manager is one of the nicest people in the entire world.
It's hard. It's super, super hard to open yourself up, to hold a mirror up to your life and say, "Here are all the ways I need improvement." But it's a good hard. It's important. I'm glad I'm making time to do this.
2) Private Pilates classes
As you know, I went to yoga classes a few times. It did not go well.
There are a couple of reasons it didn't go well. Perhaps at least part of it was my fear. I'm fairly sure at least part of it was also because I didn't know what I was doing, at all, and no one seemed very interested in showing me. Which is fine, I'm not mad (really). I am uncoordinated sometimes and even if I actually see something happening it's sometimes hard for me to follow.
I'm starting a Couch to 5K program at the end of this month. I want to be strong and I really don't want to injure myself.
Pilates is helping. It's one-on-one and the teachers are the nicest, most supportive, most positive people I've ever met. I'm learning. They are encouraging. I feel stronger. I am getting stronger. For the first time in my life I am feeling things like, "I think I can do this" and "I'm going to be able to run in a few months" and "Maybe I'll try this bellydance class" and things like that. It's good. It's really good. I am glad I'm doing this for myself.
3) This brush
Okay, seriously. This may seem trivial if you've never had hair as long and curly as mine. But honestly? Life. Changing.
This is hanging on the random towel rack in my shower (I have no idea why it exists, but it can be very handy sometimes) and I use it when I condition my hair. It gets every single tangle out without any pain. It's amazing. AMAZING.
Curly girls? Get thee to Ulta and procure this brush. It will make you happy.
4) Family dinner
I am not a perfect parent, but I think I'm doing this right.
This is my favorite part of the day. We all sit in the dining room. We use the nice plates, even if the meal is simple. There is no t.v. downstairs and no cell phones allowed at the table. We eat, we talk, and usually I feel like issuing an apology to the neighbors because we get so loud, but it's a good loud. It's a laughing so hard we can't breathe kind of loud, it's a I'm-really-going-to-miss-this-someday kind of loud.
This is right about us. Other things might be wrong, but as we sit together and eat our meal every night, I know this is right about us.
I'd love to hear what's right about you. I really, really would.