I need a massage! Yesterday at work was really tough- the business manager was running the shift, we were overrun with customers and there was mutiny in the air. No matter what I did it wasn't right. Now that our practical massage classes are over (I passed all of my practical assessments with flying colours!) I miss the weekly massages, opportunities to release some of the built-up tension in my muscles. Is it ironic that I find it hard to justify spending €45 for a massage session for myself, despite knowing that, as a massage therapist, it's worth a lot more?
Today I bought three items in anticipation of the future: a sabatier knife, a garlic press and a red apron. Part of the reason for the apron is that one of my friends is having her bridal shower soon and we've all been asked to wear aprons and bring wooden spoons! I browsed the range of aprons: striped, patterned, pictured, frilly, plain... I settled on an unpatterned bright red one made of thick cotton. I love red accessories, I'm not always brave enough to wear red clothes (though I do have a red dress on the sewing table). I have a red umbrella, an elegant but sturdy one that I love. I think that's why I chose the red apron. It's not as pretty as some of the other ones but it will last and there's a touch of class to it despite its humble practicality. I love the apron we wear in the cafe at work, a brown, straight-edged one that runs from high on the waist to mid calf. I feel such a sense of purpose and contentment in wearing it. Perhaps it's that the homemaker in me gets a chance to express herself, to set herself apart as having an important role, being someone who people come to for nourishment and care and love.
I must admit, part of me feels guilty about those purchases today. I plan to get a contract working on a cruise ship for 9 months- the interview is in June. To me it marks a clean break from my family. Not that I want to get rid of them (not anymore, anyway!), but that I want to establish myself as being a person in my own right. I want to have a chance to live as a "woman", not only as a "daughter". I want my own kitchen, to run my own household. I'm in the slow process of decluttering things in my room that I don't want to take with me when I leave and storing things that I do want to take with me. On my list of things I want to have in my own home are a sabatier knife and an apron. Perhaps I just feel unsure about taking that first stumbling flight out of the nest? Or I feel guilty about making plans when in New Zealand and Japan homes and lives are being shaken and swept away without warning. I keep having to remind myself not to be afraid, that Jesus told us that these things would happen and that it's just a sign of things to come. He's coming back soon.
"let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us, Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith" Heb 12:1-2
"Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain. And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible. I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air: But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway." 1 Cor 9:24-27
In order to prepare for working on a cruise ship (5 and a half 12 hour shifts a week) I decided I needed to build up my stamina and fitness. I've been doing interval training on my cross trainer plus some stretches. Though I've only been at it for a little while I can already see tangible results. When I started, my pulse rate would peak at about 120 bpm. During my last workout at the same level of exertion my bpm peaked at 96! My body seems to be already adapting to the increased activity! This line of thought has also been spilling over into my spiritual life. I'm not a spiritual athlete. I find it difficult to pray and read the Word sometimes until I get spiritually dehydrated and have to turn to Him or burn out. For the first time in possibly years, I've been spontaneously worshipping God in the car, not only singing praise and worship songs but praying and prophesying in song! Sometimes it starts out feeling laboured and put on, but it always ends up feeling natural, loving, exciting and passionate.
Elijah and Leah
In Home and Away today, Elijah arrived back in the bay... with his new wife and stepson. Leah had only recently left Zimbabwe after the two mutually agree to end their relationship. Leah is devastated. I would have cried along with her except that I was at the dinner table with other people. It touched a sore spot in me that had been submerged for a while. Maybe it was just a chance for it to express itself and release some emotions by empathising with someone else's (even though she's just a character in a soap opera)?