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Recapturing Peace . . . one bath bomb at a time

Author: Chrissy Stergos, MAC, CIT

I have been learning about mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness meditation is about quieting yourself, paying attention to the details of your present experience without analyzing or fretting. One thing has become very clear--I am not very good at this practice. I try to gather my racing thoughts into a meditative state with deep focused breathing and sheer force of will, but golly, it is hard. I have just come off of a long season of frenetic activity, constant intake of information and a deficit of stillness. My formerly peaceful brain has been on overdrive for so long that to merely be feels wasteful or unproductive. I need to recapture peace . To do so, I must retrain my over-worked, over-stimulated brain to relax, to enjoy, to appreciate and to rejuvenate.

Recently, I joined a young friend moving out of his apartment. We had our work cut out for us to get the place emptied and cleaned by the 3:30pm deadline, when the key was due to the rental office. Cleaning seemed the best shot for me to contribute, so I retreated into the bathroom to scrub, alone with my silent and surprisingly surly thoughts:

Gosh, I hate cleaning. I know some people say they love the before and after, but not me. I’m wishing for woodland animals to come and assist, but this is not Disneyland and I am no Snow White. It’s just me and the toilet brush and a few sponges today. I hate inhaling bathroom cleaner…cough, cough… this can’t be good for me. I don’t even clean my own house this well. Gosh, I hate cleaning. And so on… for hours.

It was hard physical work and I came home tired, dirty, salty and very fragrant. I’m not usually a bath-taker, but inspired by my earlier tub-scrubbing adventures, I thought, “A good soak in a hot tub may be just the thing to relax my aching muscles. A friend had recently gifted me a bath-bomb, and I decided today would be a good day to try it. I had some time. I had opportunity. I certainly had motive.

I ran water and placed my robe just within reach and with the waning afternoon sunlight filtering through the glass block window, I settled into the tub and dropped the bomb.

This ball of mystery-material effervesced with such energy that it zoomed around the tub as if motorized, like a spherical miracle. The now pink water emitted a lovely floral scent. Now I was ready for my soak.

I leaned back and closed my eyes, inhaling the scent of rosemary and lavender. Deep breath in. Slow breath out. A cardinal sang outside the window. Breathe in goodness. Breathe out yuck. A clo