I’m seriously considering a return to the mountain. I really want to get in good shape and climbing those steps will either do that, or well.. they’ll do that. I know too, that I need to start drinking more water. I do drink a good bit of water daily, but it has this coffee additive. I am also going to break the addiction I have to a certain hard candy. I have come to realize how bad it is when I cleaned all the wrappers out of my car and emptied the trash in this room. It was bad y’all, I won’t lie.
What does that have to do with tenderness you ask? Let’s look at tenderness from this perspective first.
We need, I need, to be more caring of myself, and show myself, a bit of tenderness. I’m usually very hard on myself for various reasons, and that needs to stop. We have been, and are yet going through a rough period in time. That is something we all know. The problems that have been created and handed to us by the virus and divisions among us are making it more than difficult to actually live. Yet, live we must, and that means taking care of ourselves.
I won’t try for this to be one of those self help blogs where you learn all manner of ways to do that. There are plenty of those out there waiting to be discovered and read. From exercise to diet to mental health care, they are out there, well written and waiting. This, is about my efforts and why my efforts alone, were and are not enough.
Just over thirteen years ago, I was diagnosed with and began treatment for breast cancer. Mine was caught early and small, meaning I had a lumpectomy and radiation treatments. While there was someone there just before the surgery, I went physically alone to every radiation treatment. I only missed two days of work because of the surgery, the day of and the day after. Only one individual checked on me nearly daily to see how I was.
I was physically struggling. Yet, every afternoon, I was able to hike the woods behind my home. I was gifted every day with something new and different. Every gift a notification that I may have felt alone, I wasn’t. I was gifted with the ability and strength to keep going, keep moving, survive and thrive.
During this time, my husband was searching for a job. He had been blacklisted from his former which made finding another difficult. We put in hundreds of online applications, he talked with dozens of headhunters, nothing was panning out. Finally, someone called him that was not on any of the lists I had seen, none that he had spoken with, but they gave him a chance. I believe to this day, God sent them to him.
When my husband died, and I had everything to face, right up until this year, was a struggle. The frustrations, the anger, the loneliness.I would make friends only to lose them within a time.I was removed from the job I had worked for just short of thirty years. I had that confusion, fear, anger to go through.
In all of that, I was emotionally hard on myself. With every wrong step, I treated myself as if I were hopelessly incompetent and stupid. I pushed myself hard. I had to find ways to do everything I could, myself. I thought, in finding my strength, physical and mental, I would find peace. But it was a battle I was trying to fight alone.
Now, as just over a year has passed since I was removed from a rather toxic work environment, I have begun to learn peace and how to treat myself better. I have learned to listen.
I have found that a hike up a mountain, a walk through the woods or sitting in my back yard, brings healing peace.
There is a small pond at the base of the hill behind my home, sitting near that, watching the ripples flow and dance across the surface, brings healing.
To take time to read a good book, allowing myself to lose myself in the words, is healing.
To work in my yard, while physically exhausting, is healing. I’m not inside my head overthinking everything, I’m concentrating on the job before me. While watching for snakes.
I have learned a grater peace than I have ever know, I am accepting me as me. That is the most important, the most tender thing we can do for ourselves. To allow our heart, to touch our mind and say, we’re good, just as we are. We are the creative, imaginative, somewhat oddball of the family, but that’s fine. There is nothing wrong with that.
Finding a peace and comfort within, a gift given by trusting in the Most High, there is no other feeling like it. I have found the greatest peace, is in prayer and long conversations with the Lord. I know He hears and I know He answers.
Now if I don’t get everything I want done, if I don’t get everything done as well as I would hope, if I have to ask my son for help, its okay.
To not stress over finances, or how this or that is going to be taken care of, is healing.
We each need to find the path of our own tenderness. Following the advice of others, is a good thing. It gives you a beginners roadmap. It gives you that starting point. After that it is up to you to find out the things that are the best help. It is up to you, to find out the best way, the most effective way, to show yourself tenderness.