For the past few days, I’ve had horrible jaw pain. I finally called my dentist yesterday when it was nearly unbearable. I was told the following: Take an ibuprofen before bed. Turn off the television/to-do lists/etc and massage the area between my jaw and ear for 15 minutes. I did. And although it’s still a tad bit tight today, it’s really a night and day difference.
I have admittedly been a bit stressed out this holiday season. Whether I’m working and not shopping or shopping and not playing or playing and not doing anything else, it always feels like the wrong thing. The good news, is that I have been trying. Trying to slow down and enjoy the moments that will be the memories my family remembers. The only drawback has been when I finish smelling the proverbial roses, I’m thrown right back into my stress spiral totaling up all the items I didn’t do while I was taking a “break.”
The jaw pain, probably caused from overnight teeth clenching because I’m apparently even stressed during my sleep, was a wake up call (bad pun was sadly intended, sorry). What difference does it all make? If I know anything about myself, it will all still get done. The work will be completed, the presents wrapped, the laundry done…eventually. Maybe it won’t be according to my Type-A expectations or timeline, but it will happen.
So, today, while the toddler was at school and the five year old was home on his first day of Christmas break, we took care of two Christmas errands and then headed to the movie theater. Nothing like popcorn for lunch and the Muppets to put you in a good mood. Then, in the dark of the theater, towards the end of the movie, my little man reached for my hand. There in the quiet, it was just me and him. No to-do lists. No distractions. Just his maturing profile in the film’s glow and his slender fingers taking up increasing room in my palm.
And that, my dear Kermit, was me finding my rainbow connection.
Well, that moment and the one where I laughed hysterically with him when Gonzo got Chris Cooper in the gut with a bowling ball. Cause if slapstick ain’t a stress reliever, I don’t know what is.