Today, my husband surprised me with an hour massage at the local spa. I don’t know where he got the idea that I was stressed out and needed a break. Maybe it was the constant “I suck” messages I was sending throughout the day. Maybe it was the fact that I hadn’t gotten myself dressed in the past few days. Maybe he just gets me.
Whatever smoke signals I was sending, he received them loud and clear. At 4 pm, I got a phone call telling me to get myself dressed, grab the kids, and that I had a 4:40 massage appointment.
If I am being honest, I had a moment of panic. “Now? I can’t go now. I haven’t showered. I have no makeup on. My hair is a disaster.” After a brief moment of panic, I took a deep breath and let it go.
Step 1 in the art of relaxtion. Breathe and let it go.
Even though I was a few minutes late for my appointment, I knew this was what I needed. My masseuse greeted me with a big smile, asked what I was there for, and we went over some areas I feel my stress. She left me with an exercise.
Breathe in three. Exhale five. Focus on that and relax.
Relax? Seriously, what does that even mean? As I laid on the table, attempting to relax, I had a million thoughts running through my mind. And some of those thoughts were myself yelling to relax.
Let’s take a look at some of those thoughts racing through my head, shall we?
1. “They wash these sheets right. They have to wash these sheets after each person. Right? Right?!”
2. “I wonder what the boys are doing.”
3. “Did my stomach just growl?”
4. “Someone tell that dog to shut up. I am trying to relax here.”
5. “Ooohhhh, that’s the spot.”
6. “Holy hell that hurts. But it feels so good.”
7. “Don’t yell. Don’t yell. Don’t yell.”
8. “Wait, what was that?”
9. “Stop thinking. Stop thinking. Clear your mind.”
9. “Is that lavendar?”
10. “She’s not gonna touch my butt, is she? Yup, totally went there.”
11. “Wow, that towel is hot!”
12. “Oh mother of God, I didn’t know your ears could be tense.”
13. “My hair is gonna be so oily after this.”
14. “Seriously, brain shut up.”
15. “I should have a had a pedicure before this. My feet are so scratchy.”
16. “Oh no, a leg rub too. I didn’t shave! This poor woman.”
17. “I bet I feel like a big pile of PlayDoh.”
18. “I totally have to blog about this.”
19. “Times up already?”
Now, I will admit. I did relax. There was a point during my massage where my masseuse told me “Good girl, you are finally relaxing.” Apparently, letting your body become dead weight and just hanging all out is key to relaxation.
As is breathing.
If I took anything from this surprise treat was that I need to breathe more. And breathe intentionally.
And tell my pesky brain to go turn off and go away.