Friday, November 25, 2011

Louises' musings on self care at this time of year

The wonderful Karen from SquarePegReflections graciously invited me to write a post in a round robin blog thingy

(i have the technical jargon down pat now don't i?)

I agreed for three reasons -
one i think Karen is awesome - she is an openhearted thinker with a way of noticing and commenting on the world which is kind, funny and insightful
two - she is a fellow Louise
three - the holidays are hard

so here goes

holidays are hard from my perspective because they are piled high with shoulds

and when i looked in my personal luggage (not matching but immense) around the holidays, i found the following...we should be happy, we should have lots of family, the family should get along, there should be rosy faces around the table looking lovingly at each other, i should buy the perfect presents, cook the perfect meal (which is tastier and better than everyone elses), wear the perfect outfit, have the perfect weather...

you get the picture...

turns out, that instead of a time of celebration and joy my actual perspective of the holidays is more perfect and more shoulds than any other time of the year...

and who pushes my buttons and triggers my tender parts??? ... that's right, the delicious combination of my family of origin and my husband's family of origin... just who i get to spend time with then!

bad recipie

in fact as i write this i can feel that tightness rise in my stomach and my mouth and nether regions (by which i mean my bum hole) clench

but when i breathe a little and look inside myself with that magical headlamp of stillness

i see little me

that little Jane who really wants to be a good girl, which means, of course not being the best Jane she can be but pleasing everyone else...

it is little Jane who wants the validation from everyone else, that what she does is perfect, so that she can be content that she is on the right track, that she is worth something...

and so knowing that, instead of more presents and more salads and more happy

this holidays i will be listening to my clenchings (just be grateful i didn't call this post listening to my bumhole- i am sorely tempted)

and when i feel the tightenings i will take a breath and say (sometimes it needs to be out loud but i suggest going to the toilet to do this - there are mental health professionals in my family that might see the need to act....)

"Honey, it's ok. You are doing fine. We are going to look after each other ok? You are safe with me. You are doing great today. You are perfect just as you are honey. What are you grateful for right now?" (and i will probably be smart enough to say having some time out from that lot, but still)

I will be realigning with myself, with that scared little girl who lives inside my tender heart, who just wants to make everything alright (to a bunch of people that crone me knows are unpleasable)

I will be showing her the deepest kindness and reassurance, acknowledging her existence and welcoming her into my arms for a reassuring hug for a moment or two when she is scared and feeling under attack...

that is what self care looks like to me...

and i hope you make the gift to yourself this holidays of practising, as my dear mollie would say "Extreme Self Care".


  1. This is wonderful, Jane - Extreme Self Care, indeed! Thanks for being part of Support Stories (and for being YOU!). Love how you love Little Jane - and help us learn to love our own Little's through sharing your process.

    p.s. listening to my bumhole would have been a fine title - I think I can hear Little Jane giggling over that!

    p.p.s. thank you for your kind words - muah.

  2. I love you, Jane.
    And I love that you listen to your bumhole <3

  3. You just always nail it! I love little Jane and Crone Jane and all the Janes in between! I keep thinking about what you said in regards to being careful what one reveals, especially around mental health care professionals ... I believe we both have found our funny farms within our hearts and imaginations. I am so grateful to have you as my neighbor!

    Here's to self care! xo Lis

  4. The title you toyed with was a fine one. Perhaps you will listen to lil Jane on that one too next time?

    Came over from Karen's post... and am glad I did.


    PS: Agree with you about Karen's 'lovable' quotient too. :)

  5. Jane,
    Thank you for that post. You hit the nail on the head my soul sister. Breathe and put on your headlamp. We call it a butthole here :)

    Vicki (captain of her soul)

  6. I also came over from Karen's.
    Qhat you said to Little Jane is exactly what I said to Little Mary in my therapist's office yesterday. But I hadn't connected her to holiday stress. Funny how we find the things we need when we need them. Thanks for sharing how to take care of it.