This season’s forecast is for flies.
Yep. That’s right.
It happens every year right about now. No matter what else the weather does, it always seems to set the right conditions for flies. And there’s no escaping it.
I generally consider myself an earth-loving kind of person. I think there’s a place for everything and everyone, but I really do have trouble allowing flies to have their space, or at least sharing it with me. I look forward to my morning run, walk or ride. I love being outdoors. I love exercising. I love nature. But I definitely struggle with flies.
So here was I this morning revelling in my ride when a fly tries to crawl into my left ear. Now that on its own makes my skin crawl. But then a swarm came at me. One on my sunglasses. One under my sunglasses. One in my eye. One on my top lip. Yew!!! Dozens on my legs and arms torturing me as they tickled, wandering aimlessly all over.
But it didn’t end there. What’s a girl to do when she’s being swarmed upon by flies while riding MTB? Not only that, but the trail suddenly got a bit tricky right at that moment when the fly attack took place. Can’t take hands off bars. Can’t swing arms or legs madly to chase them off. So I tried the only thing I could think of. I blew really hard, aiming my breath for the one on my lip whilst simultaneously visualising a force of air blowing out my ear, expelling yet another one. Scrunching up my eyes, squinting to see ahead so I could dodge the rocks and stay on the trail. Holding my breath as I rolled through the narrow gap between the trees. Whew! Made it!
Then the immense relief of being able to brush the flies off my face with my hands, take a deep breath, and remind myself we all have a place in this world. As I pedalled on up the hill, I hoped to find a fast downhill section of trail on the other side, the perfect set-up to outrun my nemesis.
Discovering mountain biking as life’s ultimate parallel universe in her middle age, Kathryn Walton shares information and reflections in Daisy Spoke that connect, inspire and self-empower women to make healthy choices for themselves.
Humans tend to fall unconsciously into habits that support the established routine. So it happens that when life is busy, and the weather outside encourages us to stay indoors, we tend to keep our ourselves in hibernation focusing on our ever-expanding list of things we have to do. With many consecutive days of cloudy, windy, bleak wintery weather keeping many people indoors, it was the talk of the town when the sun came out to shine highlighting the intensity of the bright blue sky.
One of my colleagues remarked that it’s such a pity she always has such a long list of things to do so that whenever the sun comes out to shine, she never has the time to simply sit in the sun and have a cup of tea. I suspect the cup of tea means more to my colleague than ‘just a hot drink’. The context of sitting in the sun on a cold winter’s day brings a deeper and richer meaning to the cup of tea.
I wonder what a cup of tea in the sun might mean to you? Maybe it means relaxation and recharge time; a few minutes to give yourself permission to savour the present moment; a ritual of self-care; honouring the sensory delights of a cup of tea or the fresh sunny weather; an escape from the hectic routine of family care; or maybe something else?
Whatever meaning my colleague makes from enjoying a cup of tea in the sun, it is clear it holds a significant degree of importance, yet it stays at the bottom of the list of things to do even when the weather makes it possible.
If drinking a cup of tea in the sun becomes your priority, how might your day be different? How might you be different? By embracing the ritual which recharges and revives our body and mind, we show equal compassion to ourselves as we do to those around us ….. and the perpetual list of jobs that begs our attention! We value ourselves and we value the energy we need to achieve our goals for the day.
Investing a few minutes of time and mental energy into self-care rituals is not a selfish thing to undertake. The benefits reach far beyond ‘self’ having plenty of pay-offs for those around us as well.
In keeping with the philosophy of the proverb “Make hay while the sun shines” I invite you, firstly, to consider how you can make the most of opportunities to engage in self-care rituals that re-energise, revive and nurture your mind and body; and secondly, to embrace and value those opportunities and the rituals themselves.