Create space for your soul to breathe.
– Emily P. Freeman
On Thursday night, I finished reading all 246 pages of Emily P Freeman’s book, The Next Right Thing. No, this is not a book review. Although I might do one too. But Emily’s words taught me to create space for my soul to breathe.
Our eldest son came from a very hectic first quarter in senior high. They had a lot of requirements to submit. I sensed the tension in his voice and the panic in his face every day. Often, he would stay up late doing homework.
As a parent, my way of helping is NOT doing the work for him but to assist him only when he asks me to. However, the stress he had had rubbed off on the family. And I couldn’t wait for the quarter to be over.
It was about that same time that I started reading Emily’s book. I know that we all needed a break. Since we are from the south, Tagaytay is an hour drive away. So we drove there one Sunday.
Our first stop was the Orlina Museum. Not only did it house Mr Orlina’s glass sculptures, but it had a spectacular view of Taal Volcano. As the kids and my husband admired the artwork, the view of the lake caught my attention. It doesn’t matter how many times we’ve seen this, but I am enamored by the sight.
Three floors of craftmanship and creativity filled our eyes. They also had an outdoor artsy garden that is Instagram-worthy. The clean air of Tagaytay was so inviting and calming. “My soul can breathe here,” I said to myself.
Then, we had the Tagaytay staples of bulalo, tawilis, and sisig for lunch. Tagaytay is no stranger to traffic, so my husband found an alternate route going to our next destination, the Tabby Town Cat Cafe. We drove stress-free on the smooth roads of Cavite. But we didn’t leave without stopping for Buko pie, pastillas, and our daughter’s favorite, espasol.
Both our kids love cats so they were looking forward to the Cat Cafe. I am more of a dog person, but I indulge them once in a while. The Tabby Town Cat Cafe cares for 28 cats! Can you imagine that? Though I am not a feline fan, there were a few cats that caught my attention. But the memory of my daughter’s face as she pet those cats warmed my heart. Oh, if we only had pets at home…
I look forward to road trips with my family. Short trips allow me to empty my mind of worries, responsibilities, and negativity. It’s a day of giving my mind a break. They make my heart flutter seeing the beauty of the rolling hills, the sunset, the smiles of my children, and the embrace of my spouse. All these feed my soul.
As we headed home that afternoon, I was ready to face new challenges. This experience removed some clutter and opened a space for new experiences.
How do you care for your soul? You may meditate and pray longer than usual. Or take a walk by yourself without your phone. If you love writing, maybe you can do a freewriting exercise that I learned from one of our mentors in The MomPreneurLab. Leah Eriguel instructed us to write, “One thing I am grateful for today”. Don’t think of the grammar or punctuation. Do this for a minute and the content may surprise you.
The holidays are coming in fast and moms are as frantic as they can be. Before the craziness starts, won’t you give your soul space to breathe too? You don’t have to pack your bags and go on a road trip. Give yourself a break and breathe.