I have a tattoo on my leg with the yin yang symbol and then my astrological signs around it. I wont go into detail, as it really isn't that pertinent. But I will say that is a key sign in my life.
I try to remember that in all things we must have a balance. A balance of good and bad, written words and spoken words, beauty and despair, give and take and then the balance of helping others and helping yourself. Selflessness vs. Selfishness, if you will.
This is one of the areas where I need to be constantly reminded of a balance. There are days that I am so overwhelmed, all I can think of is how it is affecting me. Selfishness. But, the reason I'm so overwhelmed is usually due to being a wife, mother and friend all at once. Selflessness. Funny how we can be both at the same time, huh?
I think most, if not all, mothers and wives go through this highly contradictory feeling most of their lives. It's maddening sometimes. It's hard to find the balance-that line in the middle that says all is well and smoothly divided.
I recently decided that I had made enough excuses and it was time to start reading again. Something other than Dr. Seuss or Magic School Bus. Don't get me wrong, these are some great children's books.....but I lost that balance again. That balance between old and new. That balance of reading and writing. In part due to motherhood. I can't remember the last time I curled up on the couch all alone and read a great book. I'm sure it's been years.
So, I've begun anew, with my yin yang symbol for all to see. Find that balance. If all you do is take care of others, find something that takes care of you! On the other hand, if all you've done is write and write while the kids are running amok, maybe it's time to try a little of the other. :) Somehow, I doubt this problem exists for many of you. We are generally too selfless, not giving enough attention to ourselves.
Now, trying something new and taking time out for myself has just started this past weekend. Sunday I made a point of not making any schedule or plan. I had the freedom to read, write, play or sleep. I did a little of all of it. I caught up with my correspondence, I enjoyed the company of my great friends at the Writer's Retreat. I took my kids to the park and read fifteen pages in peace. I had a great selfish day!! It's amazing how revived I feel today.
If you haven't paid enough attention to yourself, take a break. Sit down and evaluate what kinds of things will nourish you, revive your haggard routines. Then, take steps to accomplish those things you need. Your writing will love you for it.