Have you ever been so relaxed or content that you felt as though you were melting?
Near the end of our trip to California’s wine country, that is exactly how I felt. (And no, it wasn’t a hangover that I was feeling.) I couldn’t come up with a single thing to worry about. In fact, I couldn’t even remember what my life was like outside of that very moment: alternating between a pour of the Fay and the S.L.V. while overlooking the vineyard’s name sake, Stag’s Leap.
Sitting there, my body sinking ever slowly into a pillow on a veranda couch, the weather oscillated between a chilly rain and warm sunshine, and I imagined the vines were equally happy for the intermittent reprieve.
Being in the moment is a rare experience for me. My thoughts are usually more like a cyclone, constantly churning up ideas and mentally adding to-do items to my list. But I must admit, taking a break from that was quite therapeutic.
I could barely feel the hints of the real world returning – like the tingles you feel after your arm has been asleep for a while. And as our time there neared its end, I noticed that I was thinking more and more about what the world might be like if everyone cared as much for the plants in their own backyard as wine makers cared for their vines. I thought about how much time, thought and energy goes into a single glass of wine – and then I thought about which wine I might serve for Thanksgiving. (Yes, my mind has a way of wandering.)
Relaxation is extremely undervalued in our busied culture, that much I know for sure. We’re made to feel lazy or foolish for resting, even if just for a moment. We eat lunch at our desks. We work while we’re on vacation. And sometimes we even make snide comments about those who do manage to somehow reject those norms.
Learning to melt into a state of relaxation is something I intend to investigate more. I imagine periodic 10-minute melts would be a really good addition to my self-care practice.