As I was going through all my surgeries, both friends and doctors would try to coach me to “relax”. They said it would help with pain management. How anyone can relax when they are in that type of pain is beyond me. Nice thought though.
I am, maybe, a type “A” person. I sometimes have a hard time relaxing because … well, there is always something to do. Also, I have trouble turning my brain off. You will never catch me meditating. Not because I doubt the benefits, but because I would never be able to just sit in one spot with my eyes closed for very long.
The Torturer tries to get me to meditate while he works on me sometimes. “Picture the ocean,” he’ll say because he knows I love the beach. “Can you see the ocean?” he’ll ask. I answer, “Yes”, but I am thinking, “No!” I don’t see the ocean. Instead, I see him moving my body into pretzel formations and it hurts like hell. I am actually thinking, “When will he be done?”
One of my girlfriends thought she was being helpful by suggesting I begin yoga somewhere between surgery number 3 and surgery number 4. “I feel so relaxed when I do Down Doggie,” she said. I had to explain to her that I wouldn’t be able to Down Doggie with one arm, and if I did … Briefcase would instantly pounce on me. (Maybe she and I weren’t talking about the same thing?)
Sometimes I do relax though. Being at the beach, watching the waves relaxes me. Pretending to be there does not. Reading relaxes me. I am an avid reader. I guess, technically, I am a speed reader although it is something I do naturally and not something I have been trained to do. Combine a good novel with hanging out at the beach and I’m in heaven.
While we were in Hawaii I easily finished a novel or two each day even with our other vacation activities. Trashy, brainless novels to start with. Once my brain was turned off for a few days I felt the need to turn it back on so I read Anna Karenina. Nothing like a little Tolstoy to make the brain start working again. Then once I turned my brain back on, I wondered why I bothered and I went on to mysteries. When we returned home to real life, I had a hard time getting myself back into the daily grind. Maybe I was too relaxed?
What relaxes you? Not for a fleeting moment, but what does it take to make you really unwind, de-stress, and relax? Meditation? Massage? Exercise? Yoga? A certain type of vacation? A night out? Down Doggie? I want to hear!