Yesterday, I cleared the front porch of the remaining ‘wintry less-Christmasy’ decor, so things are looking bare like our deciduous trees. Since I am in sync with nature these days, I am adopting its pace and slowing down. Slow Living At Home & Ideas for Peace shares authentic glimpses of my everyday life.
Slow Living At Home & Ideas for Peace
Going to sleep at an earlier hour, carving out time for reflexology, cozying on down to watch movies on the weekend, and planning a vacation where ‘hustle’ is distant from the vocabulary…are intentional ways I am living slower.
I snapped these images yesterday, and they aren’t styled or zhushed. I didn’t even dust or place a vase of something on the coffee table! Things are quite spare because it is how we presently live after the holiday clutterfest.
(You see plenty of gorgeously composed vignettes from others in my archives!)
Daring to Be Spare is Rare
And don’t think for a second you’re going to find hashtags like ‘living my BEST LIFE’ in this post! Hahaha.
I am the girl trying to live, previve cancer, and survive life with a shred of dignity.
‘Best’ somehow implies I’m going to be graded, compared, or judged, and I’ve experienced enough of that business.
I’m no masochist; plus, real life brings enough stress without the self-inflicted variety.
I know the idea of ‘surviving life’ or living a ‘good enough’ life is not sexy or likely to trend in 2020 modern American pop culture.
But striving at this juncture, right where I am in midlife is not the healthiest or self-loving mode as my body heals and I adapt to daily life with chronic illness.
This quote sort of resonates with me at the moment:
Savoring the Sweet in the Slow
I have good days and bad days, and I tell you what…
I appreciate those good ones so much now!
When my gut is calm, and I can smile…oh, man.
Simple things like being able to do light housework, swim a a lap at the pool, play music on the piano, or meet friends for lunch are a big deal.
I know you get it.
But I’m a slow learner and stubborn. So even though it has been a whole year since my last remission, it remains difficult for me to step into a new normal.
Resistance to Share the Shadows
I don’t even want to push ‘publish’ for this post. I’d much rather keep the real stuff under wraps or report to you that remission has sweetly arrived as I turn a cartwheel.
Until that day, a slower pace in tune with nature and the unique needs of my health will do.
Slow Living Tips from an Expert
Here’s a great place to start if you too want to slow down.
Moving Forward Slowly & Imperfectly
Since I can blog from anywhere, I’m fortunate to travel when I have the strength.
I’ll be heading for warmer temperatures soon and skipping all the feverish sight seeing, tourist attractions, and activities which might necessitate a glam squad to render my appearance presentable.*
*Full disclosure: the butterfly-like pattern of rosacea across my nose and cheeks is a reflection of my weakened immunity and poor gut health within.
The ability to board a plane to soar above the clouds is not a small thing.
I’m so grateful to have a travel companion on the journey who cares for me in a way that doesn’t ever make me feel as though I’m not enough.
Because as weak and ill-complected as I am, I am enough!
And so are you.
Words of Affirmation for You
I’m raising a half-FULL glass of Rosé champagne to you (since I can only have a wee bit these days) with this whole-hearted toast:
HERE’S TO LIFE LIVED SIMPLY YET FULLY AS THE GIFT IT IS…where love is always the point.
What Stands in the Way of Slower, More Peaceful Living?
There are multiple paths toward peace to choose even when you decide to say YES to its invitation.
Lord knows I have sought them over the years as I journey through doubt, darkness, and despair.
At times, my pursuit of light is a desperate, feverish one.
Desperation seems to be a prerequisite for opening to peace if only because it signals I have come to the end of my personal resources.
I don’t know anything at all about the actual mechanics, but I don’t think the light swoops in when I’m sufficiently softened.
Rather, it seems the light is always there waiting for me to be permeable to it.
Love’s tender healing light waits within the stillness for my surrender and silent, consenting YES.
10 Smart Ideas for More Peace
Reducing a journey toward peace to a Pinterest infographic that hardly rings spiritual and fails to include meditation…really? Who does that?
I mean how can this list really be worth much if it doesn’t mention the peace a dog, cat, or pet may bring?
Think of it as a start.
While I believe in the power of prayer and have built spiritual rhythms such as meditation into my day, a lot of folks long for concrete ideas for embodied gestures as a bridge to more ethereal ones.
And don’t be misled into believing embodied gestures are inferior gestures.
Mind Body Spirit Matters
After years of rejecting the body* (and accepting poor theology), I have had to relearn what a precious and sacred part of the whole it truly is.
*Unfortunately, a chronic illness can make it difficult to trust the body and enjoy simple pleasures such as eating.
You already know about the strength of the body-mind-spirit dynamic.
BTW. Number 8 is decidedly not ’embodied,’ but it is so important to let go of shame and forgive yourself in order to welcome more peace.
Our bodies hold on to shame, pain, and regret, but we can show them the door!
You could pair #8 with number 4 and write post-it notes to yourself (i.e. IT’S A NEW DAY – YOU ARE FORGIVEN FOR WHAT YOU DIDN’T KNOW YESTERDAY!)
One more thing regarding #10 (invest in relationships)…if you truly want to love another purely, keep this in mind:
Thanks for listening, friends. If a faster pace of living, #livingmybestlife hashies, and ‘don’t ever let ’em see you sweat’ is more your style, I honor your journey too.
Our diversity and differences make us beautiful.
I have felt gently held in the buoyancy of your kindness and prayers and pray for you too.
Peace to you right where you are.
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