It’s one of those weekends where my soul feels deeply the need to recharge and replenish.
My skin feels thirsty for the sun’s warm kisses, my face hungry for touches from my husband’s hands, my arms achy for my daughter’s tiny body to be embraced warmly in a hug.
I feel physically my emotional need to slow down, to breathe and simply to be.
So yesterday I went to a hot, sweaty flowing yoga class.
I let my legs hold me up powerfully in my warrior poses, my hips release yesterday’s burdens in restorative hip-openers and my heart be lifted skyward in my backbends.
I sat with my discomfort at the beginning of class, when my bra irritated me and my pants slipped down in just the wrong spot. I honored my need to wipe sweat from my forehead before it went up my nose in downward facing dog. And I worked through my inner tensions and physically-held stresses until I sat cross-legged, spent and bowing forward, humbly speaking the word, “Namaste.”
And today I cuddled my little girl as we watched cartoons in bed on the laptop.
I bent over the top of her head and kissed her reddish brown curls lightly as I whispered the words, “I love you.”
I smoothed my fingertips down the baby-soft skin of her shoulder as she sat sheltered underneath the crook of my protective mommywing.
I snatched my husband as he walked down the hallway to shower off mud from mountain biking.
I ushered his thumbs to my neck as he held me tightly against his chest, and I felt the letting go in the space just between there and my shoulder blades, where my heart has felt a little battered and slightly bruised and injured.
And I realized later as I felt the wind in my hair on a family drive in our recently restored twenty-plus-year-old Toyota truck, that restoration doesn’t have to involve intense steps like sanding, re-polishing and a fresh coat of paint. No, sometimes all it takes is a little attention and the intention to love.
My soul felt tired and needy and empty. I thought, initially, that I might need weeks of recovery and extra-special care.
But, as it turned out, the basic act of paying attention to my weariness—and my cravings for human connections, sensations and love—began to heal me from the inside the moment I took that first step down the seemingly daunting road to rejuvenation.
So, today, as I admitted that my recent hard work and personal devotions have left me feeling slightly overwhelmed, I decided to take a step forward into my neediness instead of retreating into loneliness.
And, sometimes, the sun on our skin, the movement of our bodies with our breath, and the soft kisses from someone we love are all it takes to make us feel invigorated, new and whole.
“We must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise we harden.” ~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Photo: Lady May Pamintuan/Flickr.
This article was first shared on elephant journal.