Is Self Care Selfish?

fullsizeoutput_484As women, we are taught at an early age that we are the caretakers and nurturers of others.  And that is a beautiful job, one that I take seriously and feel honored to do.  But to keep pouring out into and for others, we have to remember to refill our own cup.  If you have ever traveled on an airplane, the following sentence should be a familiar one; “In case of emergency, air masks will drop from the ceiling.  If you are traveling with a minor, please put on your own mask before helping the minor”; but how many times do we really follow these directions in our daily lives?  When life gets hectic, your to-do list is never ending, your calendar is jam-packed, and you feel like you are pleasing no one, who is the first person to get pushed to the back burner?  If you are anything like me, that person is the one that actually needs the most self-love and grace, that person is yourself. While self-care may seem indulgent and a luxury we can not afford, it is actually crucial to your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual well-being. And honestly it doesn’t have to cost anything.  However, one very important thing to remember about self care is that it is a practice, it isn’t something you just do once.  By making it a part of your routine you are sending a message to yourself and others; that message is “I am worth it.  I believe in myself enough to make myself a priority.”  The benefits of self care are amazing:

  • Reduce the negative affects of stress
  • Your relationships will flourish
  • You begin to appreciate and notice the small things
  • Your physical health will improve
  • Your emotional health will improve
  • Your spiritual health will improve (do you see a pattern here?

This is just a very small sampling of the benefits.  If you begin to practice self care I can guarantee you will add more to this list each time you take the time to make yourself a priority.  In the coming days I will be giving you some suggestions of how to make self care  part of your routine and not just something you dream about doing someday….I think you will be surprised at how little time and money it will take…and remember YOU ARE WORTH IT!!!!

The Rebirth of Crosstown

Did you know that over the past 4 years Memphis has completed over 250 revitalization projects?? Just in the last few years we have seen The 19th Century Club, The Tennessee Brewery, The Chisca Hotel and Clayborn Temple all saved from demolition and repurposed. But my personal favorite revitalization and repurposing story happened just last year. Crosstown Concourse,or what we lifelong Memphians will always call it, Sears Crosstown. Built in only 180 days, Sears Crosstown opened August 27, 1927. At over 650,000 square feet this building was the largest building in Memphis to date. More than 1,000 people were employed to staff the retail store and process the 45,000 orders that came into the catalog center every day! At its peak it had an in-house hospital! As times changed,however, the way people shopped also changed. The retail store closed in 1983 and the catalog distribution center closed in 1993. After sitting vacant for more than 20 years, work began in 2014 to give this beautiful building a new lease on life. In 2017 the building reopened and has since won numerous architectural awards. There are restaurants, retail, businesses, a brewery, movie theater, soon to be high school, apartments…you get the picture…there is A LOT to do within these walls!! Scattered throughout the building are historical pictures and items salvaged during the renovations. It is a beautiful story of a city loving a building back to life…read more in the link below and put it on your list of things to explore in Memphis!!
http://crosstownconcourse.com/

Court Square Fountain

36857659_2606115286080820_2304337580226772992_n

Hebe Fountain in court square was funded through donations from several of the cities most prominent citizens and was dedicated on May 27, 1876, in observance of the nations Centennial. The sculpture weighs in at 7,000 pounds and stands approximately 20 feet high. It is named after the Greek mythological figure Hebe who was a cupbearer to the gods. It was toppled during strong winds in 1942 and due to the expense and rigors of World War II was placed in storage until it could be repaired and reerected in 1949. It still stands proudly in court square and is a beautiful part of downtown history.

Persevere

37199423_10212282213031226_6766893989015584768_nSometimes things come out of what seems to be nowhere…and kinda sucker punches you right in the gut…and it takes your breath away…and maybe you even feel disoriented, defeated,lost and alone. But then you realize your in the palm of His hand…and nothing takes Him by surprise and everything that touches your life is Father filtered. And you aren’t called to understand, or make sense of it..,you are simply called to stand tall and and keep your eyes forward not backwards at what has happened, or sideways at how others are standing or down in defeat or inward in bitterness but forward at the Son….because at the end of the day The greatest of these is love…and love ALWAYS works…maybe not in our time…or the way we think it should…or in a way we understand…but it works…Every. Single. Time. Amen.

I Believe In You

37863573_10212352235621747_8658021076455915520_nA very personal post today with a lot of words, so you have been warned.  The picture on the left was taken May 11st, 2012, the day I entered Lakeside. The picture on the right was taken on July 23rd, 2018. I don’t even recognize the person on the left anymore. But I keep the bracelet to remind me how far I have come. There are so many people walking around out there that feel like I did in that picture on the left, defeated, hopeless and broken beyond repair. The night before this picture was taken I had taken an entire bottle of sleeping pills in hopes of ending the horrible pain I felt inside. But God has other plans. And I am so thankful He did. I am posting this because I know there are people who feel like I did in the picture on the left. And they are real feelings. And they can consume you and make you feel like there is no way out from the blackness you feel. I understand those feelings but I can promise you there is a better way. It won’t be easy…as a matter of fact, it may be the hardest thing you have ever done. I know it was for me. And there will still be dark moments. But you are stronger than the moments, because you are a mighty warrior. And I believe in you. And so do a lot of other people. You feel isolated and alone right now, but the simple act of seeking help will show you what an amazing support group you have. Because you are an amazing person created by an amazing God. There are many people out there who have walked this same journey you are on. Reach out to someone and let them walk beside you. I would love to be that someone for you. Because I believe in you.

 

The House That Built Me

Dear Little White House on Arthur Road,

Thank you. Thank you for making us feel welcome the first time we walked through your cheerful red door. Thank you for loving us when we weren’t really lovable…when we yelled at each other…when we slammed doors and closed hearts….when we cried tears of frustration and fear and hurt….your comforting walls always brought us back together again….maybe a little scared up from battle, but wiser…thank you for that. Thank you for helping us see that we were still a family…because families come in all shapes and sizes. Thank you for showing me that starting over is scary and hard, but doable and that I was very much up for the job. Thank you for teaching me that a home is the people, not the place. We have celebrated birthdays, and Christmas and the first day of school and the last days of school…and hundreds of everyday kind of days thrown in between…and those are wonderful gifts. Thank you for showing us just how blessed we are by the wonderful friends that have passed through your door….and all the love we have been shown while living here. Thank you for providing a place of refuge….of safety and security. No matter how bad it was storming outside your walls, I always knew I could come in and lock the doors and I would be safe. When I found out we would have to leave you, I felt like a part of my heart was dying. I felt like I just didn’t have it in me to start over again….I was tired. I thought I would never feel safe or secure again. But I was wrong. You see, I thought I felt brave because of you….which was silly because when you truly love someone you don’t want them to depend on you for their strength and courage…you want to help them see, no matter how painfully hard at the time, that they are strong enough….and I know you have loved us these last two years. And now I know….it’s not your four walls that make me brave….no, it’s because at some point, during these last two years, I BECAME brave. Thank you for that.

Love
Kelly, Caleb, Hannah Beth, Colton, and ZooeyIMG_1892

Buttercups

The buttercup has always been my favorite flower….I remember every single year in the spring my mom would buy me a big bunch at Market Basket….the smell just smelled like spring and new beginnings to me. When I lived in Mt. Pleasant there was a field I took the kids to every year to pick buttercups…we named it Buttercup Field. I haven’t been to Buttercup Field since 2012…the year that marked the end of so many things in our lives. Recently, however, I have begun to see that endings are also new beginnings. So today after church I told the kids we were going to Buttercup Field and they were so excited…because they remembered …they had just been waiting on me be ready to remember too. So we turned down the street and looked to the right with eager anticipation for the field of yellow that had always been there….but it was gone. Totally and completely gone. The field had been plowed up and there wasn’t a single buttercup to be seen. We were so disappointed. As I turned the car around Colton asked “Momma where did they go? Didn’t they know we would be back?” img_5488“I guess they got tired of waiting,”  I said. It was quiet and then all of the sudden Colton said “Momma stop the car!! Look!!! They didn’t get tired of waiting…they just crossed the street to a new home to wait for you to come back!!!” And sure enough there they were…across the street…not as many…but the ones that were there were bigger and their stems were stronger and their color was brighter. Then I realized why I love buttercups so much..they are resilient. They can be trampled down…choked out by weeds…and even have their home destroyed..and they will find a way to cross the street to a new home where they will bloom again…bigger, stronger and with more color than ever before. They tell my story….and God knew that story all those years ago…and gave a little girl in a red brick house exactly what she needed to one day cross the street and bloom again…..