Now and then I get a free weekend so I can go back to my former town and visit my good friends. This weekend was one of them.
These times are precious to me. I get out of my rut (though I have hardly had time to establish a new rut in my new town). I get to spend time at a beautiful place in the country with one of the best friends a person could ever had. I get to play with her big dog.
And perhaps most importantly, I get to recharge, refresh and get a clean start on right living.
My friend lives in a two-story log home on 10 acres in eastern Oklahoma County. It's far enough away from the big city that we can watch fireflies dancing in the dark and can see more stars in the night sky than I thought possible.
She treats me well when I visit. We eat frequent, small meals. We snack on those tiny triangles of cheese made by Laughing Cow, on whole-grain Triscuits. Later we have fruit. Still later, she steams some broccoli so it's barely tender and we eat that for a snack.
And we hydrate. Glass after glass of water while we work on projects at her house -- sorting through clothes to give away, hanging pictures, mending clothes. All those 15-minute jobs we all put off. Snack, work, drink. Snack, work, drink.
There is balance in these weekends. Relaxation and work, in a ying-yang, back-and-forth rhythm through the day.
OK, so one of the reasons we were so relaxed is that we stayed in our pajamas Saturday until 7 p.m. That's what a 15-year friendship is good for -- REALLY relaxing together. We sat on the front porch in wicker chairs and watched the dog play and the hawks fly. Later we moved to the balcony on the back of the house to see the far-away lights and the nearby lightning bugs.
Eventually we did get dressed a little to take a walk from the house down the long, winding driveway to the main road and back. That's about a mile round-trip, with an uphill stretch at the gate.
These weekends are always good for me. Somehow I sleep much better at the end of the day in her country, and I can be sure of having lost a pound at the end of the weekend.
I'm sure it's not all the healthy eating that does it. I am SURE part of it is the sheer relaxation, which allows the body to rebalance itself. I can almost hear it saying "thank you!"
That leg cramp that thought about attacking me half-way up the hill? It said "Nah, not tonight. But don't forget I'm thisclose to getting you again!"
Yeah, I beat the cramp back. Lots of water, a banana and a vitamin D with calcium took care of his scrawny be-hind you better believe.
Lots and lots of hugs this morning at my old church also helped rebalance my spirit. Knowing the power of love for myself puts me in the right mind to do loving things for others, too. I hope to bring some of the ministries from my old church to my new church to spread the love and grace around. And there's another part of the rebalancing at work.
Body, mind, spirit. It's good to have time to sit in the clear air on a fall day and put these back in balance. Try it, and don't forget the water, or the broccoli.
Life is good!