Food For The Soul

_ Food For The Body Is Not Enough. There Must Be Food For The Soul_ Dorothy Day

Lately, I have been so focused on food. What to eat, when to eat, guilt eating with my husband, one day deciding to just eat to be happy, next looking at my body wanting to make changes…all the while neglecting what is most important. Fulfilling my soul.

I like so many of you start a good habit, journaling, meditating, working out, eating clean and then we get distracted. One day snowballs into many and we feel overwhelmed, stressed, anxious, questioning ourselves. All because we didn’t the 5, 10, 15 minutes to feed our soul and set our day up for success. Or at the end of the day I go over what I didn’t get done on my to-do list instead of giving myself credit for all I did accomplish.

Even things that bring me joy, I feel “bad” for not doing them. “You didn’t write on the blog. You didn’t read that library book You didn’t choreograph a new song for class.”  How can I be creative if I make the things I love a “job”, just another thing on my to-do list?

A couple weeks back my husband and I were in a fight and not speaking. My son who I had not seen in 6 months let me know that he his trip home had been extended again. I looked at the text and the Christmas tree still up, started crying and knew, I needed to go.

I looked up flights and found a ticket in my budget at time that I could actually take time off work. and I booked it. Knowing that I might only get to see my son briefly in the evenings. That I would be in a town I have never been to and that I would not know anyone.

So here I am in Jacksonville, NC. It has been what most would consider a boring trip to this point but it has been just what I needed. I read a book on the plane that I bought myself before Christmas. Then I watched a movie that have been wanting to see for months. I landed, had dinner with my son and got to hear about his new roommate and a training he is gearing up to go out in the field for. Meaning he will be off the grid and I won’t even get the one word texts  get now for weeks at a time. We checked into my room and he opened his Christmas. The look on his face made me so happy that I did not mail them but stuffed them into my carry-on.

As I knew may happen, his time off was not approved and he had to go back to base. The next day it rained all day. So, I slept in, binge watched bad TV shows and did my online volunteer work, without guilt. At home I feel bad about what I don’t get done because of volunteering or I feel bad that I did not help enough volunteering because I was busy at home. Again, something I started because it makes me happy to help others. I ate oatmeal at breakfast even though I didn’t work out and I had M&M’s in the afternoon. Then I got dressed, went to a box store just to wander, no shopping list to check off and then dinner with my son. Another evening of great conversation. He went back to base and I had another night of sleep hogging all the pillows.

Today I woke up, ready for a quick workout in my room, not because I had to, because I wanted to. Now I am in a bookstore cafe, with a new mystery novel recommended by one of the staff. I loved mysteries as a kid and don’t read them as an adult. I took it as a sign from the universe that it is time. Also 3 people walked by me saying how great of a book it is. I sat down with a latte and felt inspired to write. So, here I am, waiting for a text from my son, ready to spend the weekend together. Also grateful for the time to just be quiet. To not feel bad for not meditating or reading or doing the things I “should” have done and letting them become the things I want to do again.

We need to feed our bodies and our souls. Not with guilt and regret but with love and acceptance. I hope this weekend you find the space to feed your soul, no matter what that looks like for you.

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