I am trying to be kind to myself in other ways, too. Friday, for example, I took my car to the local Auto Spa for a wash and wax. If it's true that the state of your environment--your home or your car--is a reflection of your state of mind, then my mind has been in a sorry state, indeed. In my defense, I have made lot of progress inside and outside the house, but for some reason I hadn't been able to bring myself to deal with the car. Finally, I forced myself to empty the interior of all the trash and clutter that had accumulated, then I left the rest to the professionals. My little red Honda Accord looks--and feels--great now. Also on Friday, I went to New York Nails and used a gift certificate I received for Mother's Day--that was FOUR MONTHS ago!--for a mani/pedi. I paid extra to get the spa pedicure; the extra pampering (which included a hot stone foot massage, something I had not previously experienced but now must have on a regular basis) was worth every penny. After that, I met my sister-in-law, SeDonna, for a late lunch. We went to our favorite Mexican restaurant, Del Rio; we shared chips and two kinds of salsa and and girl talk. Then I ordered a shrimp quesadilla and guacamole salad and ate every bite. And Donna gave me a late birthday present--a beautiful sterling silver pearl and crystal beaded necklace she made for me (matching earrings are in progress). At the end of the day, I felt like a queen. I needed that.
And I am practicing another kind of self-care, one I didn't realize I was neglecting. Last week-end, I purchased a couple of items that wound up being unsatisfactory. One was a front door alarm that was supposed to have a "chime" feature, but the "chime" sounded more like a foghorn. And every time it went off, poor Karma went running with his tail tucked between his legs to hide under my bed--which kind of defeated the purpose of having a door alarm, because Karma is an amazing watch dog, except when he is hiding under the bed. The other was a cell phone with a touchy key lock feature. It would tell me to "Press Unlock" and then "Press Okay"--which I had to do multiple times before it would finally unlock. I wrestled for days with the decision whether or not to return these items. I hate standing in line. I hate confrontation. There's really nothing WRONG with this door alarm, I just don't like the way it sounds, and it was only ten bucks. Maybe I should just keep this phone as a back-up; it's not really defective, and I hate going to Wal-Mart. Then it occurred to me that this is just another way I often don't stick up for myself. The merchandise in question was a waste of my hard-earned cash; I deserve better. So I gathered the packaging and the receipts, mustered my resolve, and went first to Home Depot and then to Wal-Mart. Both experiences were identical. I said, "I want to return this." The clerk asked, "Is there anything wrong with it?" I replied, "No, but..." and told my story. To which the clerk responded, "Okay," filled out the return forms, and cheerfully refunded my purchase price. I know it sounds easy, and it was--but it wasn't. I am hoping it will be easier next time.
This afternoon I am going to finish the laundry and give the house a deep cleaning. So that my home, like my car, will reflect the state of mind I am striving for. Peaceful and orderly.