For a very long time, women were pushed further and further into the background. Though we have been making strides in the last century, women still tend to forget themselves. Taking care of loved ones, working, keeping up the home, and general modern life stress can take a toll. We make excuses, even sub-consciously, “no time”, “too tired”, “not in the budget”. But it is extremely important to even take a moment each day to breathe. Being tapped out on energy can leak into other areas of our lives.
Another issue I’ve seen is how we’ve separated ourselves from other women. It’s time to reclaim and re-group ourselves. Sometimes it is easier to lean on each other than just leaning on ourselves when revisiting self-care.
Two years ago I attended a women’s herbal conference. During this amazing weekend, I was introduced to The Red Tent. The Red Tent is a place where women can join in a safe space to rejuvenate, relax, and tend to themselves and each other. It is a space where you can let go of guilt and even society’s norms of not talking about our cycles. When I say “our cycles” I’m not just referencing menstruating women. I’m also talking about our cycles of life, whether we are small girls, energetic young women, mothers (with children or not), and wise elders.
Just the simple act of acknowledging that we do grow, stretch, and cycle physically, emotionally, and spiritually is a profound experience. To stop, breathe, and view that your needs should not be overlooked, is wellness in itself.
I will be starting a series of Red Tent posts and hope you follow a long. These writings will give you ideas, exercises (not at the gym! unless you want to), and hopefully spark a step in the direction to take care of yourself.
Now, sit for a moment. Close your eyes. Take a breath in all the way into your lower belly and then exhale slowly. You’ve just taken the first step.
Photo: Cathy Podd