Peace signs in my eyes sometimes get in the way of my vision. For others, it maybe dollar signs. We all feel what’s important to us differently. There are as many ideologies as there are people to uphold them.
Love without Unity?
It’s been done before.
What of the many civil wars, not only in our country, but world-wide?
Brothers and sisters, friends and neighbors, husbands and wives– aligning with different sides.
How is it that humans having so much in common can be so definitely divided?
A test of strength for sure. it’s a wake-up call about the assumptions we make based on what we believe.
Strong belief does not guarantee Truth. Not even my own.
We all have a Path to walk.
My job is not to judge how you walk yours–my job is to keep putting one foot in front of the other as I determine my own.
As a massage therapist, I relate to ‘feeling stiff” a little differently than most… as an aging boomer, I feel it all too well.
I see it as the body’s way of slowing us down until we become warmed up. It makes me feel old and creaky, compromising my balance and my confidence as well.
The soreness is inflammation from the waste our muscles have created. Movement and warmth help to carry it away, allowing freer movement while enabling circulation on many levels (it’s not just about blood–it’s lymphatic and hormonal too.
But when we don’t move much–ie sitting on the couch; working at the computer; lying in bed; tensing up while driving;, etc,–
–-we feel stiff.
What to do?
Rub what hurts before you get up and go.
Warm up literally–in the shower or with gentle movements–such as pumping your legs back and forth or making circles with yout ankles, etc.
Avoid over-stretching until you have moved around a bit
Use heat patches from the drug store–or some old fashioned Tiger Balm to warm up joints and tight muscles
Ok, that’s my preachy-massage-therapist-advice for this cold Winter’s day.
What is it about being older that interrupts our sleep-style?
And is that indeed what it comes from–is it this a “getting older thing” ?
I know that a late-night wine habit can play a part in the mid-night wake-up.
And many evenings, I decide that it’s worth the risk, placing a glass of water near my bed for the dry-mouth that often follows. Dehydration is the factor there–so drinking a full glass of water pre-sleep, often seems to help.
But on those nights when I do not indulge, I often find myself eluded by the sandman (sand person?), revved up and ready to–do what?
If I start a project late in the evening or even read something engaging, or play WORD on my app, I’m doomed to a racing mind and a dozen quick looks at the clock to see how much sleep that I’m missing.
What’s a boomer to do?
Relaxing soak in an epsom salts bath before bed-time
Yoga and muscle relaxation to soothe my mind
T.V.–oft times boring enough to put me to sleep
Relaxing herbal tea: camomile; all mints but peppermint–which is a stimulant;
Hot toddy–just 1 : little whisly, little honey, and lemon in hot water
Tell my body that I’m “letting go” and build a habit of progressive relaxation as I talk myself up from toe-to-head (or vise versa)
Quit worrying about it and “get up”, taking a nap later to revamp, even having coffee as if I’m starting the day anew
I just reorganized my kitchen. ‘Talk about a gush of energy! I keep returning to look at my straightened cupboards and efficient arrangements for a cheap thrill!
Culinary Christmas presents threw my kitchen into serious critical mass with no place for too many things.
Kitchens are symbolic–and women are particularly conscious of this, I think. When our kitchens are in order, our nerves are soothed. It’s where we provide nurturing. Conversations around the table are like traditional evenings around the fire–it’s where stories are told and feelings are shared. It’s where laughter erupts and tears spring forth.
One of the lessons my Mother taught me was to couple a bad experience with a fun-filled one.
Having polio put that to test more than once.
I can remember going to get fitted for braces at a machine shop attached to Children’s Hospital. I had a lump in my throat all the way there because I hated it so much. There was a metallic, smell of oil and a man with a big dirty leather apron who would stepkindly from behind the counter to fit me. He was gentle and that made it even harder to choke back the tears—I didn’t want to wear those big, clunky, heavy shoes with those heavy, cold steel rods that kept me upright. I had to admit that something was different about me on those days. It felt all wrong. i tried not to complain because I knew even then that it hurt my mother to see me cry.
And then… she would gather me into the car and say, “Ok, Let’s go to our favorite restaurant,” —Sugar ’N Spice!:, then we would go to a Cinerama movie to see something amazing like—The Wonderful World of the Brothers’ Grimm or Paint Your Wagon or Dr. Zchivago—and then, we’d go shopping!
I guess I got my shopping propensity from that!
Morphing from Optimistic to Optimystic
I began learning to be “optimystic” as I saw coincidences and synchronicities around me too often to believe them to be “just pure luck”. That makes even less sense than thinking there must be some sort of cause and effect afoot.
And I’ve learned to trust “timing”, even dabbling in manipulation by learning to SLOW DOWN TIME.
For instance, when I realize that I have more to do than time to do it in, as often happens, I say out-loud:SLOW DOWN TIMEand I imagine all that I want to accomplish.Then I let go of the worry. I don’t check the clock anymore after that–until I’m done. I just get going, doing one thing (or more) at a time and not engaging in panic nor doubt that it’s going to get done.
I can easily imagine spending more time in London Town –may I call it that now with my new-found familiarity? Traipsing the Burroughs and exploring London’s underbelly, via the tube lends an up close and personal view of what it’s like to live there.
I am assured by those more familiar with London that the tube is usually dependable and user-friendly. But if you’re traveling there in the near future, beware of extensive line-maintenance closings and spontaneous rerouting–quite a challenge, for the novice, for sure.
*Disability Warning: escalators and elevators (lifts) may be out-of-order, which can be a real hassle. Luckily, wonderful people saw my dilemma and grabbed our suitcases and carried them up the steep and numerous stairs which made all the difference! (Bless you all!)
There are twelve Inner London boroughs and twenty Outer London boroughs–much of which you will miss if you use the tube everywhere you go, so I suggest mixing it up with a tour bus, Uber, taxis or a river cruise to get the whole picture.
Why haven’t I lost 20 lbs by now, with all that exercise?
Could it be the great food paired with wine or the panoply of British brewed beers? Or the melt-in-your mouth fish ‘n chips, soaked with malt vinegar and dipped in an interesting red curry sauce? Perhaps England’s boring-food reputation is passe’, because we found the the menus to be both creative and imaginative– quite beyond our expectations. And if you are a gin-lover, you will feel right at home.
Many neighborhoods have “food co-ops” , small like our convenience stores but packed full with organic and healthy choices. The prices were more reasonable than I imagined and when you purchase a temporary membership for $10, your discount is immediate and a portion of the price goes to the community. Impressive.
Friends suggested that we visit Camden Town or Camden Lock, a borough in NW London, located near 3 canals used in the late 1800’s. Little did we realize that Sunday is Market Day which feels like the circus is in town, with people thronging the streets, music playing mostly American hits, vendors dealing and my senses reeling from all the food aromas, crazy signs and people gathering to do what people do best–socializing and letting their hair down before the work-week begins anew.
We took in the traditional sights too– Big Ben, living up to expectations, a sentinel above Westminster Abbey; Buckingham Palace at night with the Queen mum and possibly Kate, locked safely within; and St. Paul’s Cathedral where feeding the birds is more than a scene from Mary Poppins. Arriving just at evening’s edge, we were beckoned within, silenced by the sacred ambiance, heavy with incense and layered with centuries of prayer.
But my big surprise was walking late at night from Trafalgar Square and arriving at Piccadilly Circus–oh my! Like Times Square, upbeat with lights flashing, music pulsing, and people lined up to see the next play. With restaurants and pubs competing for your attention–it’s a haven to your hunger or thirst for the thrill of London’s famous city life.
There appeared to be many homeless people camped on sidewalks or near subway stations but they are polite and careful not to “beg”. We were told that the police leave them alone as long as they give something in return– such as directions to tourists who obviously need advice (personally speaking). Everyone said, “thank you”, even if not given money. So very civilized, those Brits.
That’s the definitive greeting of merry old England, gin is the drink of favor and I took both to heart.
We took the train, modern,and restful-to-the travel-weary, to Sheffield, located north of London in Central England, and named after the River Sheaf which runs through the city. It was a surprising treat.
In the 19th century, Sheffield gained an international reputation for steel production which put it on the map during the First World War. There is a museum for history buffs (Ellioto), and a nice cafe’ for those waiting for the history buffs (that would be me!).
The city is surrounded by hills, contains 250 parks, woodlands and gardens within the city, and an estimated 2 million trees, giving Sheffield the highest ratio of trees to people of any city in Europe. The city has a long sporting heritage, and is home to the world’s oldest football club (that’s Soccer, you know).
It is home to two major universities– the largest in England. So nightlife was thriving and we had a taste along with some local color.
Vintage shops are big there and I dutifully made the rounds, wearing the wheels right off of the suitcase!