I've been doing a head stand every morning for the last week.
Now that I've got that off my chest, I want to continue the idea of power from the last entry I wrote. I mentioned images, history, and ideas to which I give my power. I'm diligently working with these images and ideas, finding ways to strip away the power I've given to them. This process is hit or miss right now. I caught a tag line of a research article that mentioned women felt sexiest at 28 years old, and I realized how unsexy I feel now I'm almost 30. I have mentioned this to a few people, who always reply with "but you are so pretty", which I don't really care for. What I really need is a day at the spa. Once a month. And some clothes that make me feel like a girl, instead of a massage therapist. And to be 28 again.
So here I am, having taken power away from the composite image of me at 28, and given it all to the age of 28. When I was 28, I had monthly skin care, haircuts, and money in the bank. When I was 28, I wore cute clothes to work, and people told me I looked amazing all the time. When I was 28, I lived on my own, covered my own bills, and discovered the joy of thighs that don't rub together all the time (short lived, and always longed for). Monday, I caught myself telling my amazing fiance how much I missed my old life. I think I was trying to make an argument for the importance of manicures, but still, it was a bit shit-headed of me.
I had this snarky thought last night: I wonder how many women choose to have babies around thirty because they need something to make themselves feel substantial again.
So the question becomes, why am I giving this loss of sexiness any power? Why do I keep returning to this period of my life where I distinctly didn't have it all together, but didn't care all that much? Why does this matter now? I don't know. I don't know, but I do know I need to stop mourning how I used to be, and start embracing the good stuff I have now.
One year, my friend's mom made her family write down 100 things for which they were grateful as a Thanksgiving ritual. I remember there being complaints, but I also remember a little notebook that slowly filled with everything from the funny to the poignant. This exercise ended up being brilliant. In a similar fashion, last week (when I was so jazzed about self-compassion), I wrote a list of what was really important, and my thighs that didn't rub together: not on that list. Skin care: not on that list. Okay, so maybe skin care should be... but I don't should myself, right?
So here is my plan for taking my power back from the 28 year old powerhouse I was:
1. When I get down about what I used to be, I'm going to give myself a hug, remind myself that it is hard losing someone we loved, there is still someone here who matters a lot, and that someone is probably still pretty awesome.
2. There is a chalk board hanging in the kitchen. I'm going to write something I'm grateful for every morning. Not only is the appeal of writing on the chalk board undeniable, it is a quick, easy thing to check off my to-do list, right after I do my head stand. This keeps me mindful of being grateful.
3. I am going to get a manicure in the near future.
Simple enough, and I already feel a little better about the situation. So maybe I will never feel the power of being sexy like I did when I was 28, but maybe that isn't the only thing about myself I can put stock in. Intelligence is at the top of that list right now, but I'm willing to take suggestions.