Day 7: Breathing is addictive

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Wow, the end of one week of my new project. I guess that means 51 more weeks to go (followed by a lifetime, of course). This first week I’ve focused on laying the foundation for peace within myself by practicing some good habits and making time and space for good moments in my close relationships. Learning? It feels good; and it takes daily focus and (currently) effort to choose peace rather than busyness, frustration or mindlessness. Or, my big one, distraction, which I think is a form of materialism: checking email again, reading endlessly, Netflix or movies or DVDs or just multitasking decluttering cleaning obsessiveness. All this instead of being and giving directed love to my baby and other loved ones.

Tonight Husband took Baby for a walk, partly to have time for them, but mainly to give me a break and make room for writing. He is great that way, encouraging me constantly and asking me what he can do to take care of myself. I’ve loved this slice of time tonight – only half an hour so far, but so full! I showered, bustled (changed out towels), prayed and breathed, bustled some more (made tea, prepped for baby’s bath, took out milk to thaw, some clean-up, set up computer), and now write. Though bustling is tasky, it is also satisfying to sit down in a cleaner space and to take care of little things so they don’t come up from my subconscious when I’m trying to write, meditate, or relax. Whether taskiness is good or bad is one of my ongoing questions!

Whenever I’m away from baby I find that there is a lot to let go of. I still feel a constant desire to be with her, in the same room with her, touching her. Yes, sometimes I want a break, but even a few minutes away can feel like a long time even while I need longer stretches to do things that need doing. I know I can trust Baby with Husband completely, but I still worry every time he takes her out. I want to nurse right before they go, but she often won’t agree to this :). I wonder how she’s doing, if she’s happy, hungry, tired, cold. I think about when she’ll get back and what she’ll need then. I miss her. But I need the time, not necessarily as time away, but as time with myself. Sometimes it’s simply a relief to be able to rush around without guilt and take care of things. Other times there are projects that need focus and time, and that simply doesn’t happen when she’s with me. And sometimes, I just want to read or watch a movie. I tried to use my breathing and prayer tonight to let go of those worries, remember that she is fine, and let myself enjoy the time I have.

Back to the breathing. After a comment Husband made about breath starting with the exhale, I’ve been trying for the last few days to breathe out fully and gently but strongly squeeze out all the extra air before relaxing and letting the inhale happen. It’s kind of magical! Feeling the flow of breath is amazingly soothing and rejuvenating and relaxing and addictive. I want more, it feels so good! And yes, I can feel tension leaving me as I do it. Only a few minutes again tonight, combined with some prayers, but sooo worth it. I expect I’ll build up to longer stretches as this grows but for now it’s enough.

And now, back to me-time. I think I have maybe 15 minutes max before she’s home again!

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