On Stress and Nurturing
Real life has been intensely stressful in the past few weeks and when things get overwhelming for me, I hunker down on the couch with movies and books and ice cream ( which is better than drinking wine alone, right?) Work has been intensely frustrating as we get ready to open for the new season with a new exhibit, where everything that could have gone wrong, did. Added to that money and house woes and I pretty much checked out to the island of Kristen where boxes of cookies consumed in pajamas at 530pm is the name of the game.
Doing that- eating a lot of junk, not cooking, not exercising, not being very social- leads to even more stress and frustration because I know I am being bad to myself by doing those things. After an emotional day Tuesday that included some not great news, I took some time out of work to read various bits in the blogroll. And so happy I did– reading these two blogs– Tara Whitney’s post about stress and nurturing and Amy’s Just a Titch post about being happy— gave me a bit of a wakeup call about being kind to myself.
So Tuesday night, even though I felt like a boxer in the 12th round who has wobbly knees and is losing badly but won’t give up, I fought against the urge to put the pajamas on right as I walked in the door and decided instead to put my sneakers on and go for a walk. I don’t know why I haven’t been doing this all along. The minute I started walking, I could feel the stress melt away. I came back feeling clear and energized. I did a few things on the to-do list that I had been procrastinating about. Last night, even though I was exhausted on my drive home from work, I forced myself to walk again. I came home and spent the night cooking ( the other thing I had been neglecting the past few weeks) and reading in my sunroom ( which has new furniture! House update coming this weekend). Being gentle with myself and not eating my feelings in ice cream, cookie dough, and cake made me feel so much better about the situation.
Reading those blogs and knowing how I have been denying myself these past few weeks by being a lazy lump on the log makes me realize I need to be doing a better job at handling stress in my life. I’m in one of the most stressful times ever in my life- getting divorced and trying to handle the house on my own- rivalled, ironically, by the stress of buying a house and planning a wedding. There are still a lot of big hurdles to get over and after those are done, there will inevitably be more because life doesn’t stop or get easy at some point. I just am learning how to deal with it better.