My Heart, Your Home: Therapy in repetitiveness   

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

Therapy in repetitiveness

My Mum used to own three acres of land in a town called Old Bar. I spent the last two years of my life as a school student and small town girl on that land. We had just moved to Old Bar from Forster, about 30 minutes away. Which was a lifetime when you lived in Forster and everything was within 5 minutes from each other. There wasn't much to do out there for entertainment. But, the one thing I used to take so much peace from was mowing the lawns. There is something so therapeutic about a repetitive action. One blade of grass at a time, one row after another. Over and over again, all three acres worth of blades. I would get off that mower a relaxed and calmer, albeit sweatier, version of my former self.

Once I left Old Bar and that lawn mower my therapy was in limbo. No blades of grass to stare at. No roaring ride-on to sit on. No repetitive action. Until I got in the pool and I swam, lap after lap. Thinking about nothing other than that black line down the centre and my breathe. One arm over another. The splashing of two fast kicking feet. My body skimming along the surface of the water. Wall. Touch. Spin, turn. Black line and go. I would swim for what felt like eternity. One lap after another until all my thoughts and stresses were... gone. 

Then I moved again, away from a pool and close to the ocean. I found it too ironic to live by the ocean and then pay to use a pool and I was too afraid to swim the length of the beach, so swimming came to a halt. I began to run. Put myself in training to run the Sydney Marathon. I was living on my own at the time, no television and no distractions. I would be in bed by 8pm and up at 4:30 and I would run. One foot after the other, pounding the pavement. Arms swaying swiftly but softly by my side. The wind through my hair and my focus on my breathe. The throbbing sound of my body hitting the hard ground, time after time.

I then met Anthony, fell in love, fell pregnant, had a baby and life got away from me. The only repetitive action I now partake in is the changing of nappies, the washing of clothes, folding, putting away. Cleaning the kitchen, four times a day. Not so therapeutic. Not so calming and most definitely not peaceful.

I have talked about my struggles a lot over the last few months and one of those struggles as been to get myself out of the house and do something that is just for me. I have not known where to go, what to do. Being heavily pregnant with pelvic bones that feel as though they are tearing apart and falling out of my body obviously ruled out a lot of activities. I would become so overwhelmed about leaving the house and once I finally did I would sit in my car and cry because I did not know where to go, who to see or what to do. I would drive for half an hour and then I would come home.

This past week has been a particularly trialling one. I have been dealing with consistent braxton hicks which keep me awake and uncomfortable all night. Restless legs. Fatigue. Irritability. Evelyn's naughty has reached its full capacity. I am tired, drained, exhausted. I want to sleep but I cant. I cry. Every day. Over nothing. Over everything. So I decided to do something for myself, kind of. I asked Anthony to please come down to the ocean pool with me each afternoon so that I could swim. Having him with me made leaving the house a stress free experience, then he would take Evelyn off adventuring and I would have my hour of peace. Back in the water. 

It has truly saved me. Saved my mind. One arm over the other. One kicking foot after the next. Breathe in and breathe out. Up and down. The weight of my body is non existent and the pain in my pelvis, forgotten. I swim, back and forth, in the most beautiful ocean pool. The horizon in front of me and the sun setting on my back. Not focusing on a black line, but focusing on the hermit crabs, the star fish, the sea weed and the sand all swirling around each other beneath me. A whole other world, a world beneath the sea, that for just one hour a day I get to join, one lap at a time. 

Being in that water this week has changed me from a sobbing, heaving, completely inconsolable pregnant woman to a calm, peaceful and smiling girl. I have found my repetitive action once again and in doing so I have found my centre. I will not let the words of others effect me in these last few weeks, I will not allow for life to slow me down. As long as I am in that water there will be no feat I can not tackle. 

One arm after the other. 

Kick, kick, kick.

Spin and turn.


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