We are away as a family. It is a family tradition to go away. My dad is awesome about this, he takes us to places like Mexico and St. Thomas. Us means us, as in himself and my mom and the three of us sisters and our husbands and - until this current trip - all of our children. That is a lot of us's of us.
This time it is an adult us only trip even though half of our children are adults - perhaps more adult adults than some of us are quite often. This adult trip was an idea that came up around my parent's butcher block table in their kitchen last fall. We were talking about what should be our family trip and came up with the idea to have it just be us (see above).
Explaining where we are is an integral part of this writing because I am not writing this writing alone but instead with my sister -except I started without her - who I have written other writings with already. We've written about our dad, and about being happy together and about perspective. And today we are writing about adaptogens - but more specifically adapting to the current place that we are in, in our lives right now. Because when you start to need adaptogens you might also need adapta-jeans - a newly coined phrase for jeans that expand and mold to our ever changing bodily needs on any given day, (which are different than stretch jeans or maternity jeans.
An adaptogen is defined as "a natural substance considered to help the body adapt to stress and to exert a normalizing effect upon bodily processes." The operative words in this definition are the "bodily processes" because we started this writing because my sister went into the coffee shop and they were selling adaptogens and instead she bought a muffin. Actually this is not true, she bought a protein ball and a latte but she wanted the muffin because we're really talking about hot flashes.
Actually, we are not talking about hot flashes, we are talking about when our bodies change and how we navigate that in the best ways we know how. So while hot flashes are a part of this, it is more than this. It is our skin getting soft and thin and our hair changing color and texture. It is about the weight of our selves and the weight in our minds and our hearts when we look at ourselves and don't look like ourselves.
Looking outside ourselves for something to help us adapt to where we are at, while we are at where we are as we write this together, sounds so appealing. For example, taking adaptogens, or wearing adapt-jeans. But what we know - even when we don't want to know this because looking for a quicker fix is a lot easier than this other process - what we know is that looking within is really where the process starts.
Being aware of what we need means being aware of what we don't need. That sometimes we need to eat the muffin and sometimes we need to take the adaptogen. The problem is that we are so inundated with messaging from outside of ourselves telling us what to do to be ok inside of ourselves that we forget to look within and listen to what we know about our selves.
Looking within to recalibrate where we are. It is an examining of the flow of information through observation and is it the being able to distinguish the information we observe - to separate it into those things that truly sit with us and those things we can toss away. In other words, knowing what we need and knowing when we need nothing at all.
Now, about that muffin, we are going to go to this amazing donut shop at some point this week while we are here on this island.
Mother, Wife, Friend, Sister, Daughter, Dancer, Rower, Runner, Dog and Cat lover.