Saturday Morning Message: Self-Care
Author: Carol Lane
Helping others is something many of us do gladly, whether it is helping family members or volunteering for an organization in our community. When it comes to self-care it seems that it is much harder to put into our schedule. Grieving can be hard on our minds and bodies, so doing something for ourselves increases our ability to deal with the emotions that come.
In putting together the message for this week, I was looking through the TAPS Magazine archives. There I found an article written by Judy Tatelbaum, titled Tips for Self-Care. In it she writes about survivor’s different needs when it comes to taking a bit of time for ourselves. She wrote a list of self-care activities that you might find helpful. In addition to diet and exercise which are the first thoughts that come to most of our minds, she also lists some other activities you might not think about, like rest, time to watch a favorite TV show, time away from home, and many more. This short article is worth reading.
The picture this week is of the beach at Wells, Maine which is where my family went on a short trip a few weeks ago. There is nothing I like better than sitting on the beach and listening to the waves. Then I take some pictures, so when I need a break at home, I just bring up the picture, close my eyes and think about sitting on the beach.
I hope you will find the ideas for self-care in today’s Saturday Morning Message helpful.
Remember, you can write to me anytime just to communicate or if you have thoughts on what could make the Saturday Morning Message more helpful. I look forward to hearing from you. My email address is email@example.com.
Mother of Bryon
Question for Next Week’s Saturday Morning Message
At the beginning of October, the full schedule of fall and early winter holiday events start happening. This can be a difficult time of the year, but sharing our memories of the time we spent with our loved ones helps us celebrate the lives and also introduces those who read the Saturday Morning Message to your loved one. The question is: What is a holiday tradition that you enjoyed with your loved one? We look forward to your responses.
Questions are the backbone of the Saturday Morning Message. In order to keep the Saturday Morning Message fresh, I am looking for more questions. If you have questions or topics you would like to see addressed in the Saturday Morning Message, you can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I directly receive all responses that are sent to this address. Replies to the weekly question are best sent to me by Tuesday morning. You are an important part of this message, and I look forward to your questions or any ideas you may have.
♫ Song for the Week
We Will Meet Once Again
Sorry but it is difficult to talk
When there is so little time
I would like to tell you so many things
But I can't find the words
Thank you for having given me
The patience of heroes, the courage
I would like to have you always here by my side
I am sure: we will meet once again
How much this life has to teach
I know it is my turn now
Inside the smile of a child
There is already the man he will be when he
Sorry for the hugs a bit faked
That I understood too late
Of course, the experience can't be taught
But it is learned with love
Thank you for having given me
The hope of gods, the forgiveness
I would like to walk in silence
By your side, we will meet once
I would like to always walk by your side
I am sure: we will meet
You can send me favorite songs for this song of the week section at email@example.com.
Answers from Survivors
Responses from Survivors to last week’s question: What have you done lately to take care of yourself?
From Sandra, mother of Joshua: I lost my oldest son to brain cancer 18 months ago. I struggle to take care of myself. Grief can sometimes drive me to stay inside and isolate myself. Also, daily life demands can get in my way while family responsibilities tend to dominate my life. That being said, I still have the responsibility to take care of myself and get better.
I swim three days a week, attend a grief group on Sundays, join the TAPS online chat once or twice a week, and stay in touch with TAPS. I also attend TAPS seminars and have attended one TAPS retreat. I try to eat healthy, but that is a huge challenge. I just put a sign on my refrigerator that reminds me to think of three things every morning that I am grateful for.
Laying around doing nothing is the worst thing I can do. I get up, take a shower, and change into a T-shirt and jeans. Small actions like sitting on the patio in the morning with a cup of hot freshly brewed coffee, splurging on a latte at Starbucks, watching a special movie, or sipping a cup of herbal tea in the evening can be self-care. Indulging in a special face moisturizer or buying scented body wash and lotion help lift my spirits. My son used to buy me gifts all of the time. My favorite gift was Bath & Body gift cards.
Grief is tough and the loss of my oldest son has devastated me. Some days are good and some are bad. On the really bad days, I call TAPS. I have only called them a few times, but I know that they are there for me 24/7 to listen, talk, and support me.
If you would like to send a message thanking the participant in this week’s Saturday Morning Message, send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will make sure your thoughts are passed along.