What does that even mean? For me, it means living like I enjoy life, and like I want to continue living. It means treating my body well. And my mind well. It means doing things that nurture me.
Living life like I mean it means starting my day with yoga, and maybe ending it that way too. It means drinking clear water and delicious teas and strong coffee. It means fueling my body with food that makes me feel good and light and healthy. It means sunshine on my face and deep breaths of fresh air. It means long walks, and sometimes short. It means making sure I get a B-12 supplement and putting lotion on my dry skin and doing planks. It means getting my eyebrows done because that makes me feel prettier.
Living life like I mean it means reading good books that make me think, daring to dream, and daring to think about me. It means conversations with other women that make me feel good about being a woman. It means taking the time to breath deeply, to concentrate on the moment, to step back from stress if it’s causing me harm. It means doing the work instead of numbing myself. It means writing because writing makes me feel like me. It means figuring out what else I need to do to make me feel like me.
Living life like I mean it means loving my boys and relishing this time with them. It means cuddling my dog and laughing at his antics. It means loving and understanding and accepting my husband for who and what he is – he’s just another human with his own baggage trying to live his own life the best he can, after all. We’re in this together. It means making our house a home, and seeing the value in that, and not being ashamed to claim that. It means not calling myself “just” a mom or a housewife. It means accepting where I am and what we’ve built, and being happy with that.
Living life like I mean it means cutting out the things that are doing me harm. It means remembering that wine isn’t my friend. It means acknowledging that the extra weight I carry isn’t just emotional, and if I want to live a long, happy life, I need to lighten the load. It means leaving the chips and the cheese on the grocery store shelves.
Living life like I mean it means doing the hard work of acknowledging when I’m hurt, or am hurting others. It means standing up for myself when I’d rather back down, having tough conversations that I’d rather avoid, and taking up space when I’d rather hide in a corner. It also means listening to others when they stand up for themselves, acknowledging my part in problems and making amends, and making space for others when they want to come in.
I don’t believe in an afterlife. I don’t believe in reincarnation. I believe in this one life. This is it. I’ve been living this life for 45 years. I don’t recall when I stopped appreciating it. Stopped meaning it. But if I only get one life, I need to live it full out.
Like I mean it.