Five Reasons You Should Learn How To Treat Yourself

Regular self treatment, with stretching, myofascial release, relaxation, meditation, breath work, restorative yoga, or other forms of healing movement or modalities, will catapult you into a healthier mind body spirit and even take you on a journey to realizing your dreams. Treating yourself by using these avenues of self care, sets the intention for self love, one of the most important kinds of love you can give. How many million times have you heard, “You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of others,” and not actually listened? It’s time to listen, because it is your window to peak health and a kick ass life.

“I think we have to love ourselves fiercely. Like a lioness protecting her cub. Like we are are about to be attacked by a marauding gang of thugs…out to make us feel bad about ourselves. … With joy and enthusiasm and entitlement. We have to love ourselves with pride and dignity. … We have to aggressively love ourselves. We have to practically stalk ourselves, that’s how much energy we need to put into this. We really do need to discover our inner Viking and wear our shining armor and love ourselves as bravely as we ever thought possible.” Liz Tuccillo from her book, “How To Be Single.”

Part of self love is treating your body mind and spirit to what it needs for rest, rejuvination, and restoration. Giving yourself the attention you need to fill up your reservoirs, so that you can serve from the overflow is an idea I am getting the hang of. It feels so much better than trying to give from your reserves. When you are functioning with energy left over, you are able to give in a whole new way, and it never feels like a drain.

If you are constantly serving others from a depleted state, you will feel exhausted, resentful, and just plain grumpy, even if you are good at it. Wouldn’t it be nicer to serve from a place of abundant energy? From an overflow of energy, health and vitality? You know it would. Here are a few more reasons to start treating yourself on a regular basis.

It is free. Good practitioners cost money and can be invaluable to your healing progression, but let’s face it, not all of us can afford the weekly treatments we desire. Learn how to treat yourself and you will have a cost free way to work on improving things in between sessions!
Treating yourself allows you to get in touch with your inner healer and wisdom. It is this inner wisdom that knows what you need, for every aspect of your life. Learning how to get in touch with that intuition and wisdom is a gift you will use for the rest of your life.
All self treatment can be a form of body awareness meditation, and that is how you will get in touch with your inner healer. The practice of awareness, in all of its forms is one of the keys, if not the key to healing. You can practice this with any form of self treatment you choose.
Regular self treatment will help you reduce stress and probably pain and restriction in the body. Whenever you slow down and get still, practicing awareness with your stretching, yoga, etc…you will begin to shut down the body’s stress response and produce more calming hormones. The more we do this, the better.
Spending time with yourself gives you a window to who you are and what you want for your life. Really, it does! When you get in touch with your body and mind in the ways described above, you begin to make space for your soul to speak. Your intuitive voice starts to get louder and become your guide. You start to recognize your fear voice earlier, and know the difference. Self treatment is a path to realizing your dreams!

There are lots of ways to treat your body mind and spirit, some of which are listed at the top. If you do not know how to do yoga, or stretch properly, or have never heard of myofascial release, or learned to meditate, by all means, seek out a mentor who can get you going. There are a multitude of fantastic ways to help yourself. If you hire a guide, make sure they give you all the tips and techniques you need to know to do it on your own.

Even if you have never learned some of the more technical ways to treat your body, you can start with breathing. Most everyone can learn to breathe better, and it is a profound way to begin to get in touch with your inner healer. Even the few moments you spend in a quiet place, getting still, and relaxing into the awareness of your breath will serve you well, and fill you back up.

What will you do to treat yourself today?

Bio: Laura Probert, MPT has practiced physical therapy over 20 years. She is the owner of Bodyworks Physical Therapy and the author of “Warrior Love, A Journal To Inspire Your Fiercely Alive Whole Self,” and “Living, Healing and Taekwondo.” Through her brand of physical therapy, her writing and the martial arts, she hopes to inspire people to find their own inner warrior. Find her books and more info about her healing, writing and kicking passions at these sites: Body Works PT Online, Be Warrior Love, and Facebook. She also hosts a writing group on Facebook called When Your Soul Speaks.

Occasions

While growing up my mothers closet had one powder blue dress with a bow placed on front. On her dresser was a tiny jewelry box which contained a set of costume earrings with a matching necklace. This outfit is remembered as the special occasion attire as she wore it to all of our sacraments, graduations, parties, and family events.

It made me sad to think my mother had only this one ensemble but thinking about it now it makes me smile. I look though pictures of all the times of our lives and Mom looks happy adorned in blue and the bow on the front of her dress reminds me of the gift she was to us. It was not about material things but instead the occasion that mattered. She had her valuable jewelry, her engagement ring and wedding band (which by the way never came off of her hand until I had to remove them a few days before she passed away) along with her family.

This memory brought me to our pink carnation “special occasion” dishes. Every holiday as a child I could feel my excitement when I saw the china closet doors sliding open and the plates were removed. We had the smallest kitchen in that apartment and we would all jam around the table and enjoy the best roast beef or turkey dinners and gravy I ever had in my life. I tried to watch and learn the trick but the recipe was my mother’s specialty and I have the taste and smell stored in my memory.

I now own the dishes and while they are still special I sometimes wish I could have one more holiday back there. Things seemed simpler back then compared to today. I think at times we get so involved with the details of occasions that we forget to show up for the event.

I remember Easter Sunday the year 2006 sitting in the lounge of the leukemia floor of the hospital where my Aunt was ending her journey with the disease. We all knew it was her last holiday but we had balloons, gifts of beautiful housecoats to cover the green hospital gown, turkey dinners from a local takeout restaurant along with grocery store pie and cafeteria coffee. Paper plates and plastic forks and the knowledge we only had a few more days but we did not mention or think about it. We lived for that moment. That was my best holiday and I doubt I will ever get a better one in all of my life.

Sometimes I wish we could all treat each other as if this were out last day. When we know a loved one is sick we cherish our time together and we are caring and patient and kind. While we all assume there will be a tomorrow, and most likely there will be, do we really know? I am learning to embrace the “normal” activities of life and define them as occasions.

We all have something unique that will be remembered down the road. I am hoping some of the statements for my legacy will be she was the little old lady who was always up to something but was the funniest person we knew and cared!

I now end this blog to begin the day and create more special occasions. I think I may go into my china closet and excitedly wash the pink carnation dishes and use them to celebrate today!! I am 55 and despite life not being perfect these truly are the best days of my life and I am going make a special occasion out of each one I have left.

Bio: My name is Donna Ryan and I have always thrived on inspiration. I love reading it everywhere I can find it. I am 55 and it has been a journey with many twists and turns. I enjoy writing about what I have learned so far as well as my dreams going forward. Our road ahead is fun and exciting because these truly are the best days of our lives. I blog at 50 Plus Sticking Together

My Grandma’s Rules for Happiness

“If nothing is going well, call your grandmother.”

-Italian Proverb

I am swept away by whimsical charm of the children’s book, In Grandma’s Arm.

Katz says, “In grandma’s arms, in our storybook chair, we can do anything – we can go anywhere … I can hear her sweet voice sing a soft lullaby – as I rock in her arms I can dream … I can fly.”

Until recently, I rocked my daughters at bedtime. (They’re 3 and 6!) Not to sleep, but to a cozied, drowsy state. I stopped only because our chair broke. Literally. The frame shifted and the bolts fell out of our Dutalier rocking chair. Try as he did, my husband could not fix it. The chair wasn’t a piece of junk; really, we’ve just rocked that much.

I bowed my head. The time had come to bid adieu to our rocking days.

Still, bedtime is our special snuggle time. My oldest confides her secrets, her fears. We sing, give thanks, and say our prayers. Mind you, my mind does loop-de-loos and I have to reel in my to-dos, reminding myself, “Now. Be present. You have enough time. Stay in the now.”

V often prays for Grandmema, my maternal grandma, “Dear God, please take care of Grandmema.”

I always tear up, missing my Grandma. Every time.

She died three years ago. I was heartbroken, and not ready for her to leave this world. Are you ever really ready?

The last time we spoke, I was preggers with S, my youngest. I called my grandma to tell her, “It’s another girl.” She was in a nursing home suffering from a broken hip, and nearing the end. My moms says she smiled a huge grin.

She died the next day.

When V asks about Grandmema, I tell her a simple story.

She had the most amazing 1920’s black dress coat. She saved hard to buy it. Growing up, I coveted it. In my late teens, she passed it on to me. I still wear it. With big fox collar and a dozen faceted black buttons down the front, I feel close to her in it. As in Midnight in Paris, wearing it I transcend into a magical world.

She was competitive. To no end.

Yet she wanted you to win. She took me bowling – a lot! I was pitiful. Mostly gutterballs. It took all of her will not to throw the ball for me. It drove me crazy. Probably drove her even crazier.

She was a remarkable seamstress. (Below is a picture of my veil. She made it for my mom’s wedding, and my sister and I wore at our weddings – a cathedral-length Mantilla lace veil. A stunning heirloom.)

She laughed. Her grin filled her face. She savored a good joke.

She listened, quietly observing.

She understood.

She understood me.

At her funeral, during peace, my mom embraced me and said, “You are so much like your grandmother.”

Wow. What an honor. I want to believe that.

Right out of college, I worked at a newspaper in my hometown, Green Bay. I was a copy editor and worked the 3 – 11 shift. One night after work, I drove home to my parents’ house to find one of the garage doors open, lights ablaze. There was an unfamiliar pickup truck parked in the driveway.

Heart racing, I pulled out my cell and called my parents’ landline. No answer. I tried both of their cell phones. No answers. I dared not enter. I turned around in my Rudeymobile – our nickname for my red Ford Tempo – and fast-tracked the mile to my 81-year-old grandmother’s house.

I rang her doorbell. At midnight. I think I gave her a mini heart attack. She pulled me in her arms and knew just what to do.

Today, I call on her strength when I’m stumbling.

I stand taller because of her.

The beauty of life is you get to design your own.

It’s often at crossroads that we stand face to face in the mirror of what really matters.

My grandma was a mere 59 years old when my grandpa unexpectedly died of a brain aneurism. Clean bill of health on a Monday; dead on a Tuesday. She wrote her “Rules for Happiness” in 1978. To herself. She never shared them. My mom found the list on a piece of scratch paper in my grandma’s personal things.

I asked my mom for a copy, and she framed it for me. It hangs in our guest room.

Below is her manifesto:

Don’t dwell on the past, and don’t worry about the future.
Don’t expect others to make you happy, and don’t reach for something that does not exist.
Do what you want to do, and enjoy it.
Get in the habit of doing things alone.
Make friends with yourself.
Be strong, realistic and a little hard boiled.
Take care of your health.
Learn to cope with problems.
Sharpen your senses.
Always look forward to something.
Be interested in others, but find joy of your own.
Fix up your living quarter and get rid of everything ugly.
Count your blessings.
Don’t sit with unhappiness.
Learn to roll with the punches.
Treat yourself to something.
She wrote her rules, and then began a hot streak of bowling. She took up bowling after her husband died. Throwing rocks, she could take you down. She beat my husband – straight up – when she was in her late ’80s and he in his ’20s.

My favorite keepsake from her:

Perfect for me, as I am oh so familiar with gutterballs.

Cheers grandma! Whenever the sky thunders, I imagine you throwing a strike.

Ciao for now.

 

Bio: Bienvenue! I’m Rudey. I’m a writer and an elementary French teacher living Chicago with my husband and two daughters. My driving force comes from my mom, who always said: “I gave you roots to guide you and wings so you can fly.” I’ve built my life around that motto. My aim is to pass on to my daughters what my family secured in me. I want us to slow down, grow roots, and build a solid foundation. I also want to strengthen our wings and soar. It’s a balance between holding on and letting go; planning and being. No, scratch that. It’s really a blend. An integration of womanhood and parenthood, bundled in a quest to secure roots and develop wings. Rudeysroom is a collection of ideas, intentions, stories, action plans, noticings, and refinements. I write about creating, exploring, growing, parenting, teaching, and styling. It’s a lot of topics, I know. But they are all a part of me. They are so a part of my identity, that I cannot part with any one of them. So I aim to integrate them – in mindful and playful ways. By integrating, I’m simplifying life to spend time on what matters to me, to my family. This is how I’m stumbling into balance. Find me on Facebook and Pinterest and blogging at RudeysRoom. 

Brave For Her But Not for Me?

Black and white profileI should stay the heck away from this topic. For all intents and purposes Brittany Maynard’s death by suicide is old news. In our short attention span world, her death 21 days ago is now in the annals of history. Done, over, finished.

But it’s not. Her outspokenness about her choice to die when she wanted to instead of when the cancer was going to end her life has stirred up a lot of controversy, thoughts and, most profoundly, emotions.

I saw on Facebook over and over how brave she was; what a noble decision she made. I can’t help but think of how people would react if I chose to die by suicide when I wanted to instead of when the Bipolar said it was time.

Now wait, I know Bipolar isn’t guaranteed fatal, but in truth, for many people it is. For many, Bipolar is a death sentence just as cancer is to others. I myself have often thought, sooner or later, I am not going to be able to ignore the siren song of the depression and death, sooner or later I will die by suicide.

Why not make it sooner?

I don’t think noble or brave is what people would say in connection to my choice, to my decision, even though my death would be caused by an illness just as hers was inevitably going to be caused by cancer. I think people would be much more likely to say things like, if I am lucky, tragic, sad, too bad. Many, dare I say most, would be angry with me. They would think I was being selfish, they would think I was weak, that I should have fought harder, talked to my doctor more, thought of my family more, gotten more help, regardless of the fact that I have been in treatment for the Bipolar and been very compliant to everything the doctors have tried. I don’t foresee people would come to my funeral saying I was noble or brave. No, I suspect that if people came they would be much more negative. And I would definitely not be on the front page of any newspaper telling my brave story, I would be the woman who gave up.

Why the difference? Why do we allow one person to champion death while expecting another to fight to live? I understand that the doctors had told her she was going to die, but I also know that many of the medications for Bipolar are not doing what they are supposed to; I am not getting more stable. I am not getting better. So, who is to say the Bipolar is not a death sentence for me? Have they walked in my shoes, have they drown in my brain?

So again I ask you, why the difference? Why is her death noble brave and strong while mine would be a selfish act destined to bring shame to my loved ones for years to come?

Someone please tell me, what is the difference…

Charity’s Bio: I blog at http://gigglesandgrimaces.com about faith, family, mental health and homeschooling.  I also blog at the amazing site http://projectsemicolon.com.  It is my desire to let others know they can parent well with mental illness.  Find me on Twitter @signingcharity.

Letter To My College Bound Daughter

WestminsterDear Baby Girl,
You are done with what society has ‘required’ you to do. What’s left is what YOU require yourself to do. That can seem scary and daunting and utterly oblivious to you right now, and that’s precisely the way it should be, I think. I have a few words of advice that might help. For what it’s worth, I hope you pause and consider some life lessons I’ve learned along the way:

First, pay attention. The Universe sends us clues all the time, but only those who pay attention to life really find them. Think of life as a big treasure hunt, and as you move from place to place, from relationship to relationship, and from opportunity to opportunity, pay attention to what’s happening. Look for clues to help move you towards your happiness.

Second, be curious. Don’t let the world pass you by. Ask questions, wonder why things are the way they are. Don’t be afraid to try something new, to talk to strangers, or to cross the street. You are now enrolling in life school, which is so much bigger and challenging and wondrous than any school you’ve ever attended before. Be curious about life, about learning, about people and places and things that happen around you and around the world. Soak it all up and learn wherever you are.

Third, trust yourself. Remember that life has a way of working itself out. Your great grandpa Paul used to always say this, and I’ve relied on these words in times when I didn’t know what to do in life, both big moments and small. What I really think he mean was to trust – trust your journey. Trust yourself. Trust the Universe, or God, or whatever spirit you find guiding you along the way. Trust love, loss, joy, sadness, friends and most of all, yourself. Sometimes that’s the only place to go when something feels really huge. Get quiet and listen to your heart and to your instincts. You have learned right and wrong, what’s good for you and unhealthy, and you know what happiness and love feel like. Most of the time you can figure it out.

And finally, remember there’s no place like home. Your dad and I will forever love you and help you. You will always have a bed to sleep in, food to eat, and loving arms to wrap around you. Unless your life adventures take you out of phone service, we’re always a call away and a plane ride home. We will welcome you, your friends, and your partners. We will listen to your triumphs and your challenges, we will root for you in all things, and most of all, we will love you with a fierceness nothing can tame. We know you are ready, and that college is only the beginning of a glorious adventure for you.

So my dear college-bound daughter, pay attention. Be curious. Remember life has a way of working itself out. And always, always know there’s no place like home.

We love you.
xxoo

Bio: Jennifer Wolfe, a mom and middle school teacher, loves nothing more than watching kids be brave, courageous and navigate the world, Combining love, health and hope with a colossal amount of emotionally-charged inquisitiveness, Jennifer attempts to simultaneously slow down and speed up time by trusting fate and the global community to teach us life’s lessons. Jennifer reflects on life’s lessons on her blog, mamawolfe, as well as on  Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and Goodreads.

Friday Favorites (January 12-16)

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We are taking a different turn with today’s Friday Favorites. We want to make you aware of a great blogging opportunity coming up on February 20th.

1000 Voices Speak for Compassion 

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This is a brand new initiative is designed to get 1000 bloggers sharing stories of compassion, kindness, and caring for others.  The goal is to “flood the Internet with love and help create change for good.”

If you would like to learn more (or sign up to participate) please check out the Facebook Page. You can even join their Facebook group and connect with other blogging participating! We will be sharing and tweeting posts that day and we hope you’ll join in and share your own story of compassion!

Keep the Good that Comes from the Bad.

A little less than seven years ago, I was invited to meet with someone in our community who was working on organizing a large volunteer event. I didn’t know her. I didn’t know much about what she wanted to do. But I was fairly new to my job and was still trying to figure things out as I went.

I met her at a coffee shop. She was quite lovely, but she made me nervous. She was intense. She was focused. She was on a mission, for sure. She was … something else … that I couldn’t put my finger on.

We sat and chatted for a few minutes as she began to tell me what she was trying to do and how I could help. It was big. It was huge. And I wasn’t sure how I was going to help, much less how it was actually going to come together to happen.

But then I better understood her resolve as she said in a shaky voice, “My daughter was shot at Virginia Tech a few months ago.”

I lost my breath and blurted out, “Oh my goodness. I had no idea.” And then these words fell out without my even knowing it, “How is she doing?’

(An unbelievably long, uncomfortable pause.) “She didn’t make it.”

I froze. I could see those words in the air as they flew across the table, in between our coffee mugs, and stabbed me in the stomach.

I wanted to reach out and touch her hand. I wanted to jump up and hug her so tight. But I couldn’t move. I couldn’t breathe.

I didn’t know. And I should have known. This is my alma mater. I live here. Seven years ago, this Bad thing happened in my town. To my people. I knew the 32 names of those killed that day. But in that moment, I thought she meant her daughter had been injured, not killed. Which doesn’t make it any better. I didn’t connect it in time. I didn’t know who I was sitting with. I didn’t know the absolute unthinkable tragedy that I was sharing a cup of coffee with.

But suddenly I knew what the other thing about her was: An unbelievable sadness. A sadness that couldn’t actually be real. Sitting across from me, was a woman, whose beautiful, talented, thoughtful daughter was gunned down in the most vicious and terrifying way. Casually sitting in class, on an oddly cold April morning. To this day, I still have to protect myself from the details and images of the horrific scene.

However, in those moments, sitting across from her. I knew. I knew what she was trying to do. And I knew that I would help her in every way I could.

She was doing the only thing that she could do. She was trying to find and keep the Good that can come from the Bad.

I believe in this. I always have. The only way. In order to make the Bad even remotely tolerable, there has to be some kind of Good that comes from it. There just has to be. Otherwise, it doesn’t make any sense to me. I can’t understand it any other way.

So I helped her. I was one of Many who helped. I organized school volunteers and did anything and everything I could. And The Big Event was born and has continued each year, thanks to her tenacity and perseverance.

In addition, I was able to help secure another Good, a rather significant grant for our schools only available to us because we are so close to the Bad that happened at Virginia Tech. This provided all of our schools with additional counseling support that is still in place today, seven years later. All students have access to help, when they need it. A Good, for sure.

A few months ago, I came to campus with the family to run in the annual Run in Remembrance 5K. 3.2 miles for 32 brilliant souls lost that day. I have done this every year. I arrive on campus early in the morning and am intentional about spending time at the memorial, remembering why we do this, paying tribute to each person named there. I’m usually overwhelmed by each one.

I’m usually overwhelmed by the thoughts of the mothers and fathers and sisters and brothers and friends who share a hole, an Empty, in their lives. I’m usually enveloped in the Bad, the sadness memorialized here.

But this year, I was accompanied by the boy child for this tradition. As we approached the semi-circle of Hokie stone blocks, each etched with a name, I whispered to him that this is a quiet place. I took his hand in mine.

Then. As we walked slowly. He began to read each of the names. In his precious, 6 year old, Kindergarten, I sometimes forget he can read now, voice.

He sounded out their names, one by one by one by 32.

And there was suddenly a new innocence in the air. The blue sky. The warmish morning breeze. The sun on my face. The tradition. My precious family along with 9,000 other people coming together in orange and maroon. His little southern drawl voice, reading. It was Good. There was some more healing, seven years later.

Holding his hand, hearing their names in his voice. Names that were gone before he was born. Names that are still here. Inspiring Good. In that moment, once again, there was a little less Bad and a little more Good.

We will prevail. Yes. Yes.

We will. Good always does.

A Messy Beautiful, for sure.

Let’s all, Go. Do that.

Bio: MommyVerbs is written by Sharon Zuckerwar, who is trying to be a #JustOkMom, engaging each day with action words, writing about life with X and Y and playing fast and loose with punctuation. 

A Better Version of Myself

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“You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have.” -Unknown

Some days I get up in the morning and I am ready to take on anything. I manage whatever my day throws at me. Every now and then I have a succession of days where it all too hard. My brain is on overload. I think of all my ‘I can’ts’. I hope I am enough for my daughter. Faith is two. She has Spina Bifida with many complications. She struggles with eating, talking and playing. I am her hands and her legs. The ultimate play friend. I attempt to make sense of her wants and needs like any other mum. I research activities to help her develop and learn new things. I dream big, always hoping, always trying. I use her hands showing them what to do, so she is learning by doing. Progress is slow but I triumph at every small step and progress.

My emotions get the better of me on days that are filled my daughter’s sickness and they are many. I try to center myself back to normal and control my thinking (through prayer, meditation or journaling), tears come. I feel alone, my world closes in. I feel powerless and long for another special needs mum who’d get me or an understanding friend. It’s those kind meant comments that hit me those days. ‘How’s she going?,’ looking with pity at me and my daughter. I say ‘we are making progress,’ and they continue ‘can she sit up or walk yet?’ I say, ‘no, but she is getting stronger and we were get there’.

Among my grief of desiring what I can’t have I those early days. There are understanding strangers who say ‘she hasn’t got her oxygen on anymore’. She continued to tell me that she understood how big an achievement it is to lose a tube. As her son has cerebral palsy and was on oxygen for a while. What encouragement I felt. I wasn’t alone as I thought. There were other mums who understood.

It is now two years on. Faith is four. What a challenging and wonderful craziness it has have been. I’ve watched my daughter grow and develop. She says words like dad, mum, hat, car, grass and understands much more than any of us realises. She unable to eat, sit on her own but she is making progress. She has still struggled with infections, had tests done and surgery but through the pain she is smiling. She is shy but waves to people who might need a friendly smile. She loves hats and sunglasses and exploring. We just do it differently. We embrace the difference. We adjust and find a fit. I still have my days I don’t cope and struggle with am I doing enough. I cry and it hurts but as I reflect I see how I’ve grown. I’ve changed. I’ve become stronger. I’ve searched myself and in the darkness I’ve found a better version of me.

Becky’s Bio: I live on the North Coast of NSW, Australia. I have two beautiful children, aged four and five months. I love going on family road trips, reading, English paper piecing and of course writing. I also blog about the journey my family are on with our daughter who has special needs.

This entry was posted in writing.

Five Reasons Every Mom Needs a Girls’ Night Away

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“Friendship is born at that moment when one person says to another: ‘What! You too? I thought I was the only one.’ “

- C.S. Lewis

When was the last time you laughed so hard you peed yourself a little?

And then without missing a beat, owned up to it with an unselfconscious laugh?

It was probably with your girlfriends.

Right?

Pee your pants. Whatever. They’ll tease you and then hand you a paper towel.

It’s easy with them.

No judgment, just being.

For years, my high-school girlfriends and I have tossed around a girls’ weekend. Let’s get together, we’d say. And then family life would jump in front of us, breaking the chain.

Well, this past weekend we reconnected.

We put our heads together, found a date, and made it happen. You know how hard it is to find a date that works for seven moms, right? So this was a feat.

Childcare for our eighteen respective children met, and all seven of us turned up on Saturday around 1.

As the girls rolled up to my parent’s cottage for a proper girls’ night sleepover, I was geeked. I met them at their cars, eager to get the party at Rudey’s started.

Yes, 20 years have passed since high school. Yes, it’s been two decades of college, marriages, kiddos, and careers, but …

These girls are my people. We are each other’s people.

Leading up to the weekend, my husband asked, “What are you going to do?”

“Do?” I asked and immediately answered, “We’ll probably just hang out. Eat, drink, and chat.”

He was a bit baffled by this, accustomed to his annual boys’ golf weekend. Lots of doing.

I continued, “Girls just like to hang and chat, we don’t need to do anything.”

Five Reasons Every Mom Needs a Girls’ Night Away

1. To Recharge: It’s girlfriend therapy. This was uninterrupted time – a time to take off our mommy and wife hats, and be girlfriends. It was a full day to confide and laugh our asses off without any responsibilities.

Time away with your girlfriends is a pause from daily parenting to let loose with friends who are also in the trenches of motherhood. Living life as though it’s B.C. (before children) is good for the soul.

2. To Just Be: One friend verified via text, “Are we really wearing sweats?” The answer: “Yes!!!!” No glitz or glam. The only ask: Be yourself, and forget worrying about your wardrobe and those last five pounds. Need to walk out and have a cry, it’s AOK. We’ll listen and hug you. This is the time to do it. Take a nature walk and stumble on the beach, getting burs on your butt. No one judges. We’re there to laugh and pick the burs out.

Bottom line: Girlfriends love you and know you. Being with women you know and trust is a special sort of cleanse.

3. To Let Loose: I said Beer Me a few too many times. As my mom says, “It tastes like more.” But there was no judgment. We all did. Ready for a shot of Purple Panty Dropper? We all were. We had no kids waiting for us at the cottage.

Say something stupid? Something less than your every-day standard? Instead of judgment, there were giggles, high fives, and seriously!

Your girlfriends support you and call you out when necessary. Your girlfriends love you to pieces, faux pas and all. You trust each other, so let it all out.

4. To Spill It: Your back hurts? We dished and gripped; cried and shared, until we were all spilling with laughter. I had a real hankering for my husband many beers deep and pressed my girlfriend, “Isn’t he hot? Don’t you want to make out with him?” I sure did. Eek. I felt awkward when she brought it up the next morning. Red in the face, I tried to remember #3.

Girl talk never tires. Am I right ladies? We want to you to spare no details. Give us the nitty gritty.

5. To Put on Perspectacles: We swapped stories about ourselves and our family members. We roared with laughter about misadventures and mishaps. We sang loud and off beat with the townie bar’s jukebox, and analyzed our problems, big and smaller. Everyone’s story is unfolding differently, but so many threads are intertwined. Our lives have changed a lot since high school, yet so much remains.

Through talking, recapping, and reminiscing, you regroup and see life through your girlfriends’ lenses.

Do you do a girls get-away? When was the last time? If it’s been a while, fire out a text. It’s time plan your next girls weekend :)

P.S. Ladies, where should we go next?

Ciao for now.

 

Bio: Bienvenue! I’m Rudey. I’m a writer and an elementary French teacher living Chicago with my husband and two daughters. My driving force comes from my mom, who always said: “I gave you roots to guide you and wings so you can fly.” I’ve built my life around that motto. My aim is to pass on to my daughters what my family secured in me. I want us to slow down, grow roots, and build a solid foundation. I also want to strengthen our wings and soar. It’s a balance between holding on and letting go; planning and being. No, scratch that. It’s really a blend. An integration of womanhood and parenthood, bundled in a quest to secure roots and develop wings. Rudeysroom is a collection of ideas, intentions, stories, action plans, noticings, and refinements. I write about creating, exploring, growing, parenting, teaching, and styling. It’s a lot of topics, I know. But they are all a part of me. They are so a part of my identity, that I cannot part with any one of them. So I aim to integrate them – in mindful and playful ways. By integrating, I’m simplifying life to spend time on what matters to me, to my family. This is how I’m stumbling into balance. My facebook page is Rudeysroom as is my Pinterest page.