5 things you should do…

August 21, 2008


art by jen lemen

Here are 5 things you should do when you are feeling sad, overwhelmed, and realizing you have absolutely no control over the circumstances in your life… (spoken from recent experience)

1. Ride your bike– after a good cry while sitting on the back steps of my porch, I noticed my bike in the corner with cobwebs on her. She is a blue cruiser with a big wicker basket on the front, she is sweet and kind of dreamy.

I’m sure it isn’t the best idea to ride your bike when you are 8 months pregnant but somehow (even with my enormous belly) I climbed on. I rode up a slight hill, turned on the next block and road downhill with my eyes closed. The wind blowing on my face, the trees rustling, birds chirping…everything felt different. I rode this one block loop about 10 times.

2. Get some touch– I know it sounds scandalous but you need some kind of touch. Hugs, holding, etc…in my case, I went to get a pedicure. I have no money so I went to the cheapy place at the mall where I’m sure fungi congregate but I pretended that little potential problem didn’t exist. The pedicurist and I didn’t speak the same language, but we had the nicest communication with our hearts and intention. She told me I had nice legs- “long and strong” and the best part was she rubbed my feet for a really long time.

3. Make your bed– If you are a habitual bedmaker, you can halfway skip this step. Put fresh sheets on your bed and climb in. It takes me back to days when my mom folded hospital corners and insisted that everyone should have a comfy place to rest. Take a good book with you or watch a movie on your laptop. Ignore children if needed.

4. Be in nature– My dear friend Ann was spilling out her wisdom to me the other day…”You know, being in nature reminds you that life is going on all around you.” It helps you to step outside of yourself for just a little while, to see, really see life. There is hope and trust in growth and green things.

5. Draw from the well of love– I have this well of love I go to. I keep thinking it should surely be dry by now, my bucket keeps going deeper making me wonder if there is a bottom at all. I didn’t know how truly special this well was until now, until I figured out it was a very real thing I could keep coming back to, no matter what.

If that sounds foreign to you, find the small wells all around. Kind girlfriends, music and art…they are there and can give you little bits of what you need.

Feel free to share your go-to’s in times of trouble in the comments…

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7 Responses to “5 things you should do…”

  1. nikole Says:

    Often, when I’m feeling the most vulnerable and the most scared, when I most want to withdraw and to retreat deep into of myself, I have discovered that what I most need is connection.

    Sending you a giant hug, and holding you close in my heart.

  2. liz elayne Says:

    getting outside is so good. even if it just means walking outside in the backyard and simply breathing for a moment. it gets me out of my head…which i need so often.

    your description of reaching deep into the well is beautiful. i feel blessed to be slowly understanding that i do have this deep well to reach into.

    love the image of you riding around the block ten times…

  3. patty craft Says:

    Love this list! Laughed out loud at the thought of you riding your bike, downhill, with your eyes closed! (Remember that when this young one you’re bringing into the world wants to live on the edge 😉

    I’m looking forward to a walk in the woods this weekend; always a sure cure for what ails me. And this week has been a wild one.

    Peace on the path…

  4. Ann Says:

    We drove to a quiet beach last Sunday, leaving at 6am, just so that we could feel, see, smell, and play in the waves. There were just a few fishermen and one guy meditating. We had lunch and drove home. Short, but so sweet. I feel like I’ve been breathing deeper ever since …

    and I totally do the bed-making thing.


  5. […] making. Bigg and Rosie struggle with bodies (and sometimes sheep) that won’t play along. Kindness Girl talks about what to do when you don’t feel in […]

  6. ginevra Says:

    I have to just change my scene from wherever I am – if I’m inside, go outside, if I’m outside, walk somewhere else. I refer to this poem:
    nothing lasts forever.

    cold fizzy water with a lime helps too.


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