When I am too much in my head, I search for an outlet for the anxiety, the racing thoughts, the bedlam any of us experiences if we let our intellect completely run wild.
As a little girl, I retreated into the world of books. It allowed me to escape from my own world, which was causing the anxiety or racing thoughts. Many an author, some hundreds of years gone, helped me create a safe haven. I experienced others’ triumphs and tribulations on the page while running from my own.
As a teenager, I realized creating and releasing energy physically provided a similar escape. I ran. But my best running occurred during thunderstorms. The wet drops pelting my face, soaking my clothes. The roll of the thunder. The flash of the lightning. All of it fed my senses, putting them into an overload that somehow calmed my racing mind.
As a mother, holding my little ones was a cure-all, at least while they slept in my arms. Their sweet little boy smell, the sound of their steady breathing, those long eyelashes against their cherubic cheeks, and the curls that inevitably spilled over onto my arm—all made for a soothing lullaby. A mantra that all was right with the world. With my world, at least.
In my middle age, I am not sure any one of these bits helps. Books are a sedentary activity I am, at times, too restless to endure. Running requires an energy I have to muster from the bottom of my being after a long work day. And my little ones are not so little anymore—not at an age where I can hold them while they sleep.
I try to meditate. Pray. Turn it over to a Higher Power. I put order to chaos in my house—closets, dishes, laundry. I walk the dog. Try to stay in the moment and not extrapolate too far ahead or look too far gone for happier memories.
I have no words of wisdom here. I try the mix—all of it—at alternating times and rhythms. I hug my boys more often, even if the holding is now taboo to their growing man/boy selves.
I think of the other souls out there trying their own mix, trying to find the lasting secret sauce.
I’d love it served up on a platter.