Several years ago (before twins and baby JP), I visited Yosemite with my husband. We were camping at Tuolumne Meadows, about 45 minutes outside of the “main” Yosemite village. Shortly after unpacking, we set out on a walk across the meadow with all the fixings necessary for a romantic camping picnic-a bottle of red wine, crackers, and beef jerky. The thick, yellow-green grass on the meadow stood at 6 or 7 inches high, hiding patches of boggy water and mud. The air was cool, with a faint breeze that kept us from getting too warm. A quiet stream wound sneakily through the tall grass. At the far end of the meadow are some enormous boulders. They look like sloping, grey hills emerging from the plain mountain meadow. After a brief exploration of the flat land, John and I decided to scramble up one of the large granite domes. High up on the Pothole Dome we chose a relatively smooth part of rock to relax on where we could enjoy the gentle breath of wind and look over the wilderness below us.
When I’m troubled in the middle of the night and too anxious to sleep, this is where I try to imagine I am. Instead of filling my thoughts with doubt, I try and mentally put myself back in that spot at that time, with the carefree spirit of adventure that filled me. Visualizing this happy place has always eased my spirits.
Recently I had a new blissful moment.
It started with a trip to one of our local theme parks. After a few hours of nonstop fun and excitement, the girls were so wound up they were practically vibrating. The hope was to get home in time for naps, but the girls didn’t make it that far. They slept a few minutes on the car ride and then refused to take an actual nap once we arrived home.
So there we were, everyone exhausted, and the little ones not cooperating with our ‘everyone needs a nap’ plan.
That’s when I took a chance on luring them to rest with promises of Mommy cuddles.
“Let’s all go lie down in Mommy’s bed!” I suggested, hoping my enthusiasm was enough to convince two 2-year-olds that group naps are fun.
It worked. We all piled into Mommy’s bed, and began settling down for a rest. Once both girls each had their pillows fluffed, teddy bears located, and favorite blankies tucked around their little bodies, they were finally content enough to go to sleep.
I stayed there and just enjoyed being with my two precious girls. All four of my children bring me so much joy. When their smiling faces cross my mind throughout the work day, thoughts of them bring peace to my soul.
I stroked their hair and tucked blond wisps behind their ears, I thought about the fun we had had. They were so peaceful. I could hear their soft, steady breathing. It was such a contrast from the wild energy of just a few hours before.
This #52Project pic from that day reminds me to slow down, listen to soft breathing, and find my happy place in the comfort of my sweet little ones.
I’m curious-do you have someplace where you visualize yourself when you want to relax? When you think of it, does it put you back in that moment?