1. Mom's illness and the many challenges it presents to our family is weighing heavily on my mind and I am doing my best to, at once, deal with the challenges and questions and do things each day that help relieve me of my anxiety. I'm not looking for escape. I am doing things that help relieve the weight of the pressure I feel. About the best thing I can do is get out of the house and get moving. Walking all those steps in Washington, D. C. was perfect, as was the tour I went on and seeing Dick and Renae and talking about so many things, light and heavy, was not only fun, but a great lift to my spirits. Talking with the Deke helps immeasurably -- our conversations help give me perspective and always increase the range of possibility for how to move forward.
This is all to say that I loved floppin' around in the pool today. I missed my water aerobics class last week because of my echo stress test on my heart and today I loved jogging, doing jumping jacks, cross country skiing, stretching, jumping, and all the other movements we all do together. I extended my workout after class by twenty-five minutes and then soaked in the hot tub for ten minutes.
It's as if walking or going to the pool wears out my anxiety, as if getting a little bit tired with physical activity depletes the energy I need to feel anxious and pressured. I really don't know why it helps so much, but I am grateful that my once troublesome feet don't bother me at all and that I can get out and move around without discomfort and relieve myself of the sensations of anxiety, even as the causes remain.
2. Anything I do in the kitchen, whether it's chop, clean, or cook, also takes the pressure off.
This morning, when I dropped the Deke off at school, I asked her what she might like for dinner. She told me she had sent me a recipe for a salad on Pinterest a couple days ago, but she couldn't remember what it was. Back home, I found a recipe. It was for Mexican Coleslaw -- it advertised itself as "taco salad meets coleslaw". I was all in. The recipe is simple, creamy, and loaded with flavor ranging from the sweetness of corn to the mild heat of jalapeno pepper to the smokiness of the paprika to the blend of spices in the homemade taco seasoning I made. The recipe for the coleslaw is here and you can see what you think of the taco seasoning, here.
3. After my session in the aquatic center, I listened to a voice mail from Hiram. He asked for a ride home at about 8:30 from Dulles Airport. No problem. Even after living here for nearly three years, I feel this sense of awe that I live where I do -- that I drive on the Capital Beltway and am just an under an hour away from Dulles, a place that has become nearly mythical over the years -- it always seemed history was about to be made in some dramatic way because of some important person coming into or departing from Dulles. I picked up Hiram and listened to his stories about his time in northwest Washington state without making history, without becoming a part of Dulles International Airport lore and legend. We didn't attract coverage from The Washington Post either.