Welcome to Following the Whispers blog

Thank you so much for taking the time to visit. Hope you enjoy your stay. I blog here whenever I feel the need. This blog was created at the time my memoir came out, in February, 2009. Its motto was: creating a life of inner peace and self-acceptance from the depths of despair. Now, my focus is sharing this journey we call life.

“Only one thing is more frightening than speaking your truth, and that is not speaking it.” Naomi Wolf

“We are called human beings, not human doings.” Wes Nisker, Buddhist teacher

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs…(And) if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” Theodore Roosevelt

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Taking Care of Ourselves

I was never very good at taking care of myself. Didn't know how. I ate whatever the heck I felt like eating, didn't exercise, never paid attention to my own rhythms, and did whatever anyone wanted me to do--no questions asked. Over the last few years, I've learned to do things differently. I eat healthily, exercise (most of the time) and listen to the whispers of my heart and mind and soul. During the hectic holiday season, I'm realizing it is more important than ever to take care of myself. If I don't, who will?

Fortunately, I am not invited to too many holiday gatherings. My mother-in-law goes to visit one of her other kids on both Thanksgiving and Christmas. That leaves hubby and me to fend for ourselves. This Christmas, we are driving to Carlsbad, NM, which sits on the Pecos River. Those who live on the river decorate their houses with lights, and the city runs boats along the river for viewing. I've always wanted to see this spectacle. This year we will. Carlsbad Caverns is one of the natural wonders of the world--a must-see as far as I'm concerned. I've been there before, but only on the typical tour. This time we will do a special tour down into another cavern. We'll need flashlights and good hiking boots. I can't wait.

It took us awhile to figure out what to do. With no immediate family here, it can be difficult. This won't be typical, but it will be delightful. And a time for hubby and I to get away, just the two of us. I will not bring the computer. Nor will I blog.

Taking care of myself involves going within to see what my needs really are. Do I want to be social? Am I needing alone time? Do hubby and I need some quality time? Do I have to do something just because I was asked to. Or just because Mom might enjoy something, does that mean I have to go out of my way to include her, if it adds stress to my day?

Each and every moment, I am learning to evaluate the situation and make appropriate choices. It's not always easy, but it sure is teaching me to take good care of me.



Cyndi said...

The whole riding the boat along the river thing seeing all the lights sounds fabulous! Good for you, you deserve it!

Tamika: said...

Karen, I pray you and your husband have a wonderful trip! It sounds like you have an exciting time waiting on you.

Taking care of ourselves is key to healthy living. My body is a holy place- the Spirit dwells with me and I want things to be in order for my companion! Mind, Body, and soul.

Jody Hedlund said...

Wonderful advice, Karen! Timely! Especially since I'm struggling with how to balance all of my new writing repsonsiblities!

Joanne said...

If you don't take care of yourself, who will? It's so important to tend to your own needs and nourishment in order to be in a healthy place in dealing with other parts of life. Very inspiring words in your post today, especially at this time of year when our demands increase. And your river ride sounds amazing ... Enjoy!

Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

I love this post, Karen. So often we put ourselves last, which isn't healthy. I take a lot of inspiration from you on balancing out my life.


~Ellie Kings~ said...

Sounds like fun. Have a wonderful time!

Patricia Stoltey said...

I think I need to follow your good example here. Thanks for a very inspirational post, Karen.

The Old Silly said...

A good lesson to learn in life, and a sign of mature wisdom. Hey - we gotta grow up SOMEtime, eh? lol and wink.

Marvin D Wilson

Tabitha Bird said...

I think I need you as an ear piece. I am still learning that it is actually okay to look after your self. For years I had it drummed into me that it was selfish.

Patti Lacy said...

Wish I would think rationally as you do! I leap from thought to thought still--at age 54!!

Great post!

Enjoy the break!


L. Diane Wolfe said...

I would so love to go see Carlsbad Caverns! We managed to see so much in our four years living in ABQ, but never made it there.

Elizabeth Bradley said...

Gosh, Carlsbad sounds like a terrific place to spend the holidays. This post spoke to me, as I am of the same frame of mind of late. After spending my entire adult life taking care of others, I am in the position to reevaluate and redesign my priorities. Sounds like you are on the right track. Happy Holidays!

Donna M. Kohlstrom said...

Have a joyous, relaxing and rejuvenating trip!

Don't forget to tell us all about your adventures in the caverns. I've wanted to do that but have claustophobia!! UGH!

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