The rain beats down incessantly. The sky without a hint of blue, grey clouds hovering. The damp in the air sends chills through me, the cold unceasing. Perhaps there is something to be said for synchronicity.
So on a day of tears and gloom, I sit down to write about nurturing, seeking to add my voice to a community of bloggers sending encouraging words into the world. Apt then to speak of nurturing the self.
Expecting a rather busy day at work, plans changed and there I was, in the quiet space alone and without an immediate thing to do. Then a connection with a friend, unexpected and most welcome. For some reason, instead of the usual commute home with music and headphones, I chose to read. And without the isolating equipment (aka headphones), I found myself in conversations with fellow commuters, sharing for a short time stories we chose to tell of our day, exchanging views of what would be considered mundane matters. And there is something in all these.
I did not plan my day to be so, nor was there an intention ‘to nurture myself’. Things fell into place because I did not fight them. Yes, I could have done work that didn’t require immediate attention, I could ignore a friend because I was at work. As for reading instead of music, well I have no explanation other than I felt like it, so I did. Ironically, I was too tired to plan, to resist, to manage… I went with what was.
And what was, worked. Here I am at the end of a day feeling nourished. Still tired but in a better place. It is here, now as I am writing this that I can give voice to what my soul desires today – solitude but also to connect in a meaningful way, to write, to express.
Sometimes the only thing we can do is to let go and say, ‘what the heck’, ‘whatever’… Sometimes, it is then that we find the relief we need.
Nurturing ourselves is at times an act of surrender. When our minds step aside so our soul desires can take hold, this is how we feed our soul – its dreams, its hopes.
Perhaps another word for nurture is more appropriate when we speak of dreams and hopes – to cherish. To nurture ourselves means cherishing our dreams and hopes, and we do this through honoring our soul desires.
I had attempted to cherish my dreams and hopes by taking active steps always. In so doing, I was oblivious to or ignored my soul desires. Untended, they remained dormant and in turn those dreams and hopes… well, they did not take flight. Active steps are necessary to realize dreams and hopes, but they are not the same as nurturing.
Nurturing is the place of rest, nourishment, restoration… where it is alright to receive, to take in order to care for and protect yourself.
When we have nurtured our selves, when our soul desires are sufficiently nourished, our dreams and hopes will have firm ground from which to launch, to take flight.
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