I had a spa day in my bathroom this morning- on a random, uneventful Thursday.
It was one of those mornings where you don’t want to get out of bed- where every movement seems to require 10-times the effort and when makeup seems tricky and messy and hard to manage.
I had a spa day because I needed one- I needed a quiet moment alone, a tangible way of proving to myself that I still care- that I haven’t forgotten, that I’m still here.
I’ve been harsh with myself lately- expecting perfection in the things that are so big and sky high that I can barely reach them.
I want my decisions to be perfect, my choices and my actions following suit. I want to be equal parts successful and capable and gracious and patient. I want to be perfect in every way, never needing anything but always having an extra measure to pour out.
And those expectations have begun draining me like a slow, steady leak.
I’ve turned on my poor body- staring it down accusingly and hatefully- angry when it can’t keep up. I speak to it with distain when it gets tired or when it can’t perform the way I want it to.
And I’m having a hard time letting go.
Letting go of my expectations for myself feels like admitting that I’ll never reach them. Easing up on my body feels like giving up- coming to grips that I’ll never be what and who I so want to be.
I’m having a hard time prying my hands off of perfection, accepting grace and needing things. I’m having a hard time being the one that needs the prayer and the hugs and the listening ear. I’m having a hard time letting go of my pride and giving myself a break- understanding that perfection was never the goal in the first place.
And it’s not coming quickly.
The unraveling of my expectations is turning out to be a long and painful process- reluctantly accepting grace from those around me, while still refusing to give it to myself.
But this morning, in the shower and after, I took a small step in the right direction.
I scrubbed down with the best smelling sugar scrub- my favorite little treat after a year of showering in a bucket. I lathered on the thickest, most luxurious lotion I could find- letting the moisture soak into my exhausted skin.
And as I put the finishing touches on my morning, and prepared to walk out the door, I caught myself rubbing my newly soft hands together- taking a moment, just a moment, to notice.
And for the first time in a long time, I felt grace.
Grace for my body and grace for myself. With soft hands and a moment of grace, I let a few grains of expectation fall and for the first time in a long time, I felt love.