Monday, January 24, 2011

Take Care of Yourself

"Take care of yourself," he often said when we left the farm heading home. Take care of yourself.

Hey, Dad, I'm listening now.

As a parent, a grandparent, we forget to take care of ourselves. Oh, we might eat better, exercise more, even go to counseling to take care of ourselves, but what do we do to 'take care of ourselves'. Maybe I'm not explaining this well.

If I had the money to spare, I would have a cozy house, like a bed and breakfast, but not the aforementioned. The house would be an oasis for parents and grandparents offering a 'home', a place where they could come to read or rest. A sort of 'time out' home away from turmoil, children, noise. A place to write, listen to music, take a nap. An oasis with a garden in which to dig or to sit. Paths to walk and new friends to make.

I needed one of these when I was raising my children. I needed a place where I could escape for a few hours after my husband got home from work or on a weekend. A place away from the responsibility of home. A time out just for me.

As a woman living with my daughter and granddaughters, living on a very limited budget, I long to have such a place. Writing at home is difficult for me now. Writing at a coffee shop is spendy....and I do need my coffee. We all need that place where the stress stays outside the door, a place to create and recreate. A place to find the parts of us that get tossed aside due to the circumstances of our lives.

We all need to find our place away from home where we breathe a bit easier, where we refresh. Life is indeed not easy. Often the load is heavy. So for now, I run away to the bookstore or library. I sit by the lake and fill my senses with birds, water and trees. I lose myself between the pages of a novel. I know that I need to escape to my 'time out' space.

Available to everyone in our families, we are too often not allowing the same availability to ourselves. Maybe one day I will have that house, a haven, a temporary hideout for parents and grandparents.

"Take care of yourself". Thanks, Dad.


  1. Can I sign up for a room there now, Pam? My wife keeps talking about building a cabin or a yert and just leaving our house to the chaos.

  2. Jake, you are on the top of the reservation list. Of course, the wait might be a bit long.