What I have been trying to make, however, is time. The last few weeks have taken a lot of energy, and the present is still very fraught. What we need around here is calm: but you can't make that on a stove or a sewing machine.
For me, the answer is usually to go back to yoga. A few years ago, when I had ME, I relied very heavily on the very approachable Elizabeth Irvine's meditation podcasts for mothers (she no longer updates, but all the archives are there to download for free) and the slightly less down-to-earth Jean and Jesse Stern. There are a lot of meditation podcasts out there, but some of them were a bit too New Age for me to handle - I can't honestly keep a straight face if someone starts calling me 'pilgrim'.
|Picture of a candle that I didn't take|
If you've done yoga before, I'd really recommend these seasonal yoga podcasts, recorded by Sonia Welch, a very lovely yoga teacher whose classes are among my favourites when I have the time to actually get to them. The podcasts aren't really for beginners - you have to have an idea what you're doing - but they come with comprehensive notes on the postures as well as advice on the best food for the season (I never manage to eat the right food for the season). The winter podcast is lovely and gentle, and after making a habit of it for a short while I can feel the benefits. A bargain, I think, for £6.50.
I doubt that calm will ever fully be felt in The Coffee House. But I'm making an effort, at least.
Two final things:
1 If you do know someone with ME who is looking for a way forward, my best advice would be to direct them to the yoga teacher Fiona Agombar, whose book, CD and weekend retreat were among my lifesavers.
2 On a more trivial note, have you seen Blogger's new threaded comments (below)? This is the most exciting thing that has happened so far in my blogging year. Luckily it is only January.