Sunday, May 27, 2007

Take Care of Yourself and Those You Love

Treat yourself well. Take a long leisurely bath, candles lit, soft music. Caring for yourself is important, it rejuvenates the soul. It helps us gain focus.
Its no secret that when you are refreshed you find it easier to face difficulties and to have more patience. Its not selfish to take some time for yourself, its wisdom. Its a bit like recharging your batteries.
Even when my children were young, I took long soaking baths, complete with candles and a glass of wine or sometimes it was just plain iced water in a pretty plastic goblet.
Everyone knew it was my time and although there was no "Do Not Disturb" sign on the door, the family knew this was time to leave mom alone. Dad was always handy at these times anyway, he could handle all the needs they had. If you are a single parent, wait till the children are asleep and take some well deserved time for yourself. Think positive thoughts, breath deeply and deliberately. Make the bath smell special, and I loved lots of bubbles.
When you feel good about yourself, your children will feel good about themselves too. The old saying, "we tend to become like that which we love" is true for children too.
We forget to take care of ourselves and our relationships.
And if you are married, remember to care for your marriage in a special way too. Write love notes to one another. Stick a note on his pillow, in his lunch or in a pocket of the clothes he will wear that day.
On difficult days, when you might feel frazzled, remember why you first fell in love. Go over memories of your dating days.
And always remember to date, no matter how many decades you have been married or even if its been just a year. Perhaps you have small children at home or no money for going out to eat. You can work within that, we did.
Plan a special meal for just the two of you. I had a friend who would pack a special basket with sparkling apple juice, cheese and crackers, special napkins, love note, candles etc and have it at the front door when her husband came home from work. Letting him know it was going to be date night. Their children were small, she fed the children early, the parents would play with the children until they were ready for bed, then they would enjoy their special meal when little sleepy heads were sound asleep. Having the basket at the door for her husband to see as he came in the house, let him know it was going to be date night, and they would both smile just thinking about a special meal time together.
It didn't cost much and it could have been peanut butter sandwiches if that was what they had, it was the idea of something special for just the two of them, something out of the ordinary.
Keeping love fresh and alive takes some thought at times. Life can be so busy that it all becomes hum drum. Walk together holding hands, gaze into one another's eyes and think about all the things you love about one another. Now that we have no children at home, we go out to eat at sidewalk cafe's and quiet little restaurants, they are not expensive but cozy and romantic. Sometimes we will just pack a picnic of a baguette, cheese and some wine and spread a cloth in our own yard. Love needs to be nurtured, the love we feel for ourselves, the love we feel for our spouse. Our children need nurturing to mature into healthy adults. All relationships need nurturing,
but we tend to forget that for ourselves and our soul mates.

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