I have needed today. I have looked forward to today. I don’t spend enough days devoted to pampering myself.
How many of us do?
Yesterday I toiled and worked and slaved at my computer, preparing for year-end. Papers up the wazoo. Though I felt a great sense of elation when I checked off giant piles of receipts that needed reconciling, the day was one full of drudgery. I toiled until ten o’clock, so that today I wouldn’t even have to give work a cursory glance. (Okay, so I took an hour-long break and sat in the hot tub with a friend…)
But today? Today is my birthday. And I chose to celebrate in personal splendor. My desire was to spend the day doing only things which bring me joy. This is how my day went:
1. I woke and made a light breakfast for some girlfriends who were coming over.
2. I chatted and ate and wrote and read with my friends. Three glorious hours!
3. I sat on the couch, where I could finally admire and appreciate my Christmas tree. (Who has time for such indulgences during the holiday itself?)
4. I enjoyed playing Mario Party 8 with two of my three children. I especially loved the laughter.
5. I lounged on the sofa and read all of the well wishes from my friends.
6. I opened birthday cards that had arrived in the mail.
7. I went to dinner with my family and several friends.
8. I opened presents.
I began the above entry on December 30. By the time my birthday festivities had ended I was pooped, too tired to finish the entry. Then New Year’s Eve arrived and I stayed up until nearly four o’clock playing cards with my husband and some friends. I haven’t done that since my college days! Needless to say, I slept half of Sunday away…then came life: work and school and evening obligations and weary…
Today has brought me full circle to ten days ago. I spent yesterday on my feet, cleaning and catching up. More bookwork, and laundry up the wazoo. Right now, I am sitting on the sofa. The tree lights glisten across the room. The sun sparkles against a fresh, fluffy snowfall. I have had a simple morning. I am rested. Hubby has taken the rare day off from work. He sits on the floor, sanding and staining a piece of furniture, as he watches football. The scratch, scratch, scratch sound of cloth against wood is somehow soothing. Moments of peace. Joy. Rest. Contentment.
As I write this, a part of me wants to hold tightly to this memory, to ward off the chaos that will begin again, tomorrow. Even as I write those words, though, I recognize how important the diversity is, how vital it is to have balance in life. How many times have I said that, if we didn’t have the ugly, we couldn’t appreciate the beauty. If we don’t have the stress, we can’t appreciate the moments.
Maybe that is what the wise ones mean by be present in the moment. We need to embrace it, rather than use it as a pawn against the pressures of life.
Join me in the moment, then share yours, and spread the joy…