Saturday, January 6, 2018

Photo journaling and other steps in self care.

"We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection." -Anais Nin

As the new year has begun, I've been thinking about what I want to take with me from 2017, and a big one for me is self care.

This autumn, I’ve incorporated daily journaling into my life, because it feeds my soul, and I’ve come to learn that motherhood should include tending to yourself as well as your children. There are some days when I am able to sit down and take time to write, other days when it ends up being a quick note on my phone, and days that it just doesn’t happen. Rarely do I get a chance to journal in peace and quiet, and even more rare are those days where I have a couple hours to myself in a coffee shop. However, I have made it a goal to journal daily in my effort to prioritize self care.

Another aspect of my self care plan this season has involved attending yoga sculpt classes. Recently, I was in a class where the teacher was talking about how we can all live inspiring lives, and that really, all it takes to live an inspiring life, is to live your truth. That struck me, because my life has felt less than inspiring lately by society’s standards. I came from a season of life where I was a high school teacher, and through my job, worked daily to try and make a difference in the lives of my students, and in turn, felt like I was making an impact on the world. Now, I care for my two children every day, and it is just different.

Photo journaling has been a gift for me in this season of life. The well known Anais Nin quote,  "We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection," resonates with me, because it describes why I find purpose and value in journaling and photography.

This little corner of the internet provides a space where I can practice gratitude through journaling and photographs, and it is a place where I can try to live my truth, as I figure out what that means. I know blogs are so 2008, but photo journaling as a practice feeds my soul, and so here I am.

I am a recovering perfectionist, or maybe just a recovering overachiever. Sometimes I feel like things aren’t worth doing if they aren’t perfect. Like if I don’t have a beautifully crafted essay, I shouldn’t share my thoughts. Or if my photos aren’t those magical kind taken at golden hour, I shouldn’t share them. But more and more, I am coming to realize that the true beauty of life comes in between the moments of “perfection.” The photos that aren’t planned or posed. The journal post that is a quick thought jotted down in the midst of a busy day. The chaos found in between the “perfect” moments is real life, and often holds the most beauty. As I have a moment, I will keep sharing here, for as long as it feels right, mostly because it feeds my soul, and hopefully, I will learn something along the way as I try to figure out what it means to live my truth in this stage of life.

Right now, I am in a season of immersing myself in motherhood, doing my best to create a beautiful childhood for my kids, and seeking joy and happiness. The truth is that I really like this season of life. Although I have nothing figured out, I am really enjoying spending my days with my kids. Motherhood isn’t my only calling in life and it’s not my only identity or purpose or where I find all my self worth, but for right now, it is my number one purpose, and it is enough. And I am happy just settling into this season.

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