Oh my word, what a beauty Day Nine of the Ramadan Kindness Calendar has been.
Things did not start off well. And by that, I mean a 5 am wake-up call, not from my fancy light-up-the-room alarm clock, but from my body. My poor, aching, cramping, bleeding body.
Since the Yardimci Lads were quite literally thrust into this world, my periods have been getting steadily worse. I've been to the docs on a few occasions to try to figure out what on earth is going on but there are only so many times you can watch a doctor rely on Google to give you answers.
So I've recently taken it into my own hands to learn more about my body and the messages it might be giving me. I'm a huge fan of Lisa Lister and her fascinating musings on the female form in all its furious, succulent glory. If you haven't yet read her books, Code Red and Love Your Lady Landscape, I urge you to get on the case. Her words are a rare mix of humour and wrath and do everything in their power to get us women to wake up and take notice of our beautiful bodies.
When I woke up this morning, there was little else I could take notice of. The twisting, soul-tormenting pain was telling me there was no way I could get back to sleep and there was an even slimmer chance of me diving into my usual morning yoga practice. So I used the time to sip an earl grey tea and plan how the blinkin' heck I was going to manage the school run.
This was where the kindness began. I knew I couldn't perform to my usual standard in the preparations of young Lads for their daily dose of education, but I needed to be kind to the hubby and NOT force him out of his pit to do this for me. He was, after all, fasting and would have been up at stupid o'clock last night to ensure he hit his daily sustenance quota.
Next up, I knew I needed to be kind to myself. That meant lowering my standards big style.
This was surprisingly easy, as I spent the majority of the time lying on the sofa, clutching a hot water bottle to my groin and groaning breakfast-making instructions at the Lads who were through in the kitchen. One the one occasion they did need me to come and sort out a freak peanut butter accident, my BEAUTIFUL boys practically jumped on me to give me massages and humongous cuddles.
Then I made a plan I thought I could just about cope with. Stay in pyjamas. Do not bother with make-up or hair. Get in car. Get children in car. Do not even bother parking car. Drop children off at school gates. Bribe older child to lead younger child to classroom. Go home and back to bed.
First though, we had to contend with the bloody wheelie bins. Good job the Lads were in kindness mode.
And from that point onwards folks, I really felt like kindness pretty much engulfed me.
Just as I was about to stunt-roll the kids out of the car, I spotted a friend of mine who came to my rescue and made sure they got to their classes on time. She later What's Apped me to within an inch of my life to see if I needed help with anything else. Bless her.
Unfortunately, I couldn't really take her up on her offer of help with the afternoon school run as today is the day I teach mindfulness to a group of beautiful young souls in Solstice Yoga Studio, Brixham. I had to pull energy up from my soul one way or another and it had to be like, nowish.
If there's one thing I've learned after twenty five years of menstruating, it's that women are flippin' awesome. The ones who you confide in about how shit you feel when you're bleeding, just get it. They get YOU and they show you and tell you in a way that makes you feel held and safe right when you need it.
And the ones you don't tell, maybe because passing each other sometimes in a school corridor hasn't quite got your relationship there yet, STILL seem to match your energy and then raise it. High. Because after I left that school run and made my way to the yoga studio, I just knew that if ever there was a time for me to teach mindfulness, this was it.
And as if Big Lad's impeccable behaviour during the mindfulness class wasn't kindness enough thrown my way (remember that blog post?), womankind moved me yet again before I made it home tonight. I mean, listen to this . . .
One mum brought me a selection of strawberry plants. Apparently her daughter (from my mindfulness class) had been so touched by the flowers the lads gave her last week, that she wanted me to have them for my garden.
Another mum gave me and my assistant a vegan chocolate chip cookie sandwich each as a thank you for working with her son. I nearly cried when she gave me it and hinted that her timing really could not have been better.
So on that sweet note, I will leave you, because there is a cookie calling my name and I'd like to ponder a little more on the depths of kindness I have been swimming in today. Those ripples really do seem to be endless.
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