jusummerhayes

Self care

South Brent nr. to the River Avon
South Brent nr. to the River Avon

“I felt my lungs inflate with the onrush of scenery—air, mountains, trees, people. I thought, "This is what it is to be happy.”
Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar

How was Christmas day?

Ours: it was wonderful and deeply meaningful to spend time with my wife, two children and best friend, but I missed my eldest daughter. We had the obligatory virtual catch up, but it's never the same. I cooked and I think they liked it — three vegans and two (as they say) normal folk. I didn't drink too much, which was good as there have a been a few Christmases where I've pushed the Chivas Regal boat out just a little too far. 

Anyhow, tis Boxing Day — as they say in these parts.

The title?

I'll keep it short.

I've been on a roll, talking about (finger wagging more like...!) the state of our planet. The obvious question (to some) might be if I see any hope? A little but I prefer to live in the now, rather than mortgage my future on what might be. This isn't me getting all woo-woo and soppy on you, it's simply to acknowledge that now is all we've got, and it's what we do day by day, not glaring off into the mist-laden, supposedly better future, that counts.

But...

You won't be able to do a thing, or not to the best of your God-given ability, if your health is shot or your mental state is, well, err..., broken. As in (and this is putting it mildly, particularly as someone who's suffered his fair share of Black Dog episodes) you're listless, in a constant state of ennui or depressed. 

And before you think this is going to be another one of those deep cleanse, eat lots of broccoli posts, don't worry, that's not my shtick. In fact, I wouldn't know where to start in the good-health proclamation department, given that we're all unique. Oh sure, there are some acknowledged facts around a good diet, sleep, laying off the booze and taking exercise but you know, better than anyone, or at least I'd like to think you do if you've lived any time at all, what you need do to get your sh*t together. 

If it's not already obvious from what I've said here and Twitter, I mainline on nature when I want to get back on my 'sane-as-hell' (*laughs inside*) horse. It's not the only thing that works but I know when I've been pushing it too hard and need some time away from the coalface to recharge and replenish my batteries. And then I'm good to go another 12 rounds for a few more days. To be clear, it's not always that simple or contrived but, for sure, the longer and deeper I go into nature the better I feel.

Blimey, that's not much of a takeaway!

No, not really.

Then again, we too often take our welfare for granted and, sadly, as I've witnessed many times in my life, we give up or we give up once what was possible. If you avoid that — i.e. going to sleep on life — that's a very good place to start.

Anyhow, have a wonderful day.

Much love, Ju


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