by Beverley Brown, UK
It was a usual Monday morning and I was getting ready for the day. I noticed I felt a little off as I had my period and it was a little uncomfortable, so this I gently pondered on.
I proceeded to shower, gently washing and drying myself, as part of my morning ritual. I then put on my underwear, which I had felt to warm on the radiator beforehand. This felt amazing and a very loving and nurturing thing to do.
Then came the make-up and hair. I usually stand in the bathroom (the light is better here) for the make-up, or in front of a long mirror at the top of the stairs where the hairdryer, brush and product station is.
Today, due to achy legs and a mild ache in my uterus, I felt to see what it would be like to sit down whilst doing both these tasks. I got a small folding chair from downstairs and placed it in front of the mirror and I sat down. I noticed the metal edge of the chair was slightly cold on my bare legs, so I put back on my pyjama bottoms and slippers to keep me warm. My make-up did not go on as usual and the mascara smudged down under and above one of my eyes. This did not faze me at all as I was caring for and loving myself so much by sitting down that it rubbed out the potential annoyance of the smudge effect, so to speak. As I sat applying my make-up I noticed that from my seated position I was not close enough to the mirror to see well enough without straining to reach forward. To correct this potential straining I chose to use a smaller hand held mirror. I felt like a movie star in a black and white film as I gently, carefully and quite elegantly applied my make-up, taking my time, paying attention to myself… and actually enjoying myself, too.
I continued to dry my hair and I noticed I was paying more attention to my body in my new found position of being seated. “Why had I not done this before?” I asked myself, as it felt amazing.
The hair and make-up were complete; not looking as tidy as they normally do, but all of this was absolutely fine as inside I felt amazing and not fazed by the fact that my hair had suddenly decided to become static and lively at the front, and also that one eye was not quite as perfectly made up as usual. I had taken so much care of myself and I felt the beauty of me from the inside to be so great that I just knew the outside would reflect this, even though to the eye it may not be perfect (a smudgy eye and static fringe!).
I then took the chair back downstairs and I used it to stand my washing basket on so I didn’t have to bend to the floor to get the washing from the basket. Again this simple and obvious choice made a huge impact on how I felt.
I had really taken care of me and it took no extra time and there was no ‘to do’ list about what I was doing.
A recent discussion with other women around nurturing has emphasised to me how self-nurturing is not about a long list of ‘have to dos’, ‘to dos’ or a time consuming regime that ‘must be completed’ and “then I’ll feel like a woman because I’ve done it”. No, to really nurture me as a woman is about taking care and honouring myself fully. Not compromising my body in any situation, even when applying my make-up and doing my hair! I have learned through this experience that nurturing is a gentle flow of self-care from within that then plays out as an outer experience. The key for me was to actually bother to take notice of how I was feeling and honouring that in the moment it was felt, like sitting down when my legs ached. How easy is that???
The point really is how simple it is to introduce those little things in our everyday tasks and routines that can make a HUGE difference to our day, without taking extra time or putting undue pressure on ourselves.
Hey, I even ended up with plenty of time to write this down to share with you and still leave for work on time without rushing. What an Awesome start to my day!!