Down to Just the Essentials - Self Care Sunday

Well I am back from a very  intense, interesting and reflective time all due to a cluster of tornado's that raced through the south last Wednesday. While indeed a scary time for our family during the storms it also brought forth a huge feeling of awe to see the power of the storms and the relative insignificance of anything in their path. Not much better than Mother Nature to re-align you as to your place in the universe!

In the after math many more lessons were learned and expanded upon as we helped neighbors by moving trees with some and crying with others. The loss of property, pets and sometimes life is rather staggering for our sleepy little part of the country and yet generally the support and  manpower reaction has been stunning and efficient as possible given the widespread scale of effect thrown down by event.

Personally it has once again helped me see what I am able to do when needed and what is really important and what really brings me comfort and care on the most basic of levels.The loss of electricity for 3 days was of little real inconvenience besides  loosing all the food in our refrigerator and freezer  and more than once I stubbed my toes in the dark on items that should have been put away during the light of day.

 Past that some of the  lessons were:

1)Keeping up with my household chores - had the laundry been up to date I would have had a nice stash of clean undies ( really we ALL would have) but since it was not I got to play washer-woman with the boys in the back yard with my dainties and then string them up on the line to dry.  The young boys actually loved doing this and it was a solid hard working afternoon of wash and talking about how people lived doing this type of work every day for all of time and that the wash we now do in our big fat front loader is a VERY modern invention when it comes to the span of history.

2) Being prepared - If I had been adequately prepared you would not have found me cannibalizing the other household electronics for batteries to put in the emergency weather radio - from now on a fresh pack of the correct size batteries will be stored with the radio!

3) Alternative thinking - In a "flash" of brilliance ( pardon the pun!) I realized that our outdoor solar lights that line our paths would work just as well to light our very dark house without the fear of fire or the kids buring themselves.  These lights currently run for about $3-$6 each at your local hardware store and it's well worth having a few out in the garden ready to press into service when the dark comes. ( might I note that real dark, is very very dark!)   May I also note that you can cook just about anything from oatmeal to spaghetti on a gas grill if you are innovative enough!

4) Hot showers are soothing ( and were missed) but I can go multiple days with just a quick cold bath and  not look like something just dragged from the bottom of the lake. Taking a bit of extra time on each of these difficult days to put on some makeup, do my hair made me feel much more able to get a handle on my day and be effective in helping others.  Lets face it, I was blessed, I still had my house and running water, to drag around like I had less was a real insult to those who were without both.

5)Beauty lurks-  Even in the most dire circumstances there is beauty to be found if you look hard enough. This  is the Peony from my front yard after the first Storm cell blew through.  It was amazing that it made it through and I was grateful of the hope it brought me.   I lost many other flowers and my roses took a real beating but I know they will return.. that is a promise I find most comforting.

Be well, take care,
Love, Maddie

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