October Thoughts from Alayne’s Brain
What a year! Many times our illustrious team is asked if there is in fact an alayne white! My job over the past few years has changed from being an omnipresent force in the spa (which usually drives my team a little crazy) to being out and about through our little state at events promoting and driving business into my spas. In the midst of all of this outside work, I spent the first part of the year planning my son's Bar Mitzvah. Why am I telling you this? Why is this picture on the homepage of our website? To start with, these are my grandparents in the forefront, my son in the Bruins shirt is in the back so these are his great grandparents and that is me in the back. I thought that October would be a good time to catch you up on what I am thinking, what I have thought and just general brain energy from my non stop mind. I hope you enjoy my thoughts on beauty, life and the never ending world of transitions we seem to be an integral part of.
Yesterday I went to the beach, yes I go to the beach, often. It is my peace, my meditation. The beach is filled with stories of people, family images taking photographs trying to capture the essence of the moment, children running around with their dogs, their sandy bottoms, relaxed people. I was there with an old and amazing friend whom I have known for over 20 years and recently reconnected with. The mood was calm, we were reading, chatting, watching and sitting in quiet.The beach does this for me. Mind you, it was October 10 and it was well over 80 degrees out, but the sun, the air, was different, there was a coolness to the atmosphere which reminded all of us how special this day was. I was somewhat modest in my sunscreen application, you know that mindset when sitting at the beach in October gives you permission to be a bit slack in the sunscreen department. As it turns out, of course this was a mistake. I am absolutely religious about application of sunscreen. SPF 30 Head to Toe, the entire summer, no exceptions. As a result I never burn, and get a nice tan. I know in doctor's eyes, there is no such thing, but more on that some other time.
I got home last night with a bit of a burn on my back and am definitely feeling it today, but in trying to look at the glass half full, I am enjoying its reminder that I was in fact at the beach on October 10. I was there as a witness with all the other grateful souls trying to capture this special gift of the possibility of a final bonus beach day in October. My house was a mess back home, bed unmade, dishes in the sink, clothes needing folding, and many other loose ends that I know drive my female friends bananas, (as well as my former husband). The key message here though in our constant need for clean and orderly is what are we missing while we are busy doing all the stuff we think we are supposed to be doing before we get to the magic? Why can't we do the magic first? I know many of my friends would say that they can't relax until "it" is all done. I used to hear it all the time when women would come in to the spa to have a 90 minute service and they would be using the time feeling guilty about taking the time when all that "stuff" would be home waiting for them. I get it and my goal here is not to try to change the way we women think I know this to be impossible, we are all doing the best we can, we are all in the right place at the right time for whatever reason. I do not sit in judgement, but rather offer a different perspective that I hope is worth a look at.
Life is flying by us. As i approach my late 40s, and perhaps this is why I am starting to see that the stuff gets done in time, maybe it is age, but whatever the reason, I am choosing to do the things that speak to my soul more often. The things that make me pause, feel gratitude and appreciation. When I get in that zen state, I am a better mother, a better leader to my team, a better partner, friend and general human. I speak for myself here. We all get joys from different places, but sitting at the beach yesterday with a wonderful person enjoying each others company, I was struck by how many people were doing the same thing. I was happy to see it. In this year of lots of change, a move, my marriage moving on, my father dying, my son's Bar Mitzvah, a power outage causing our Bristol spa to close for a week, staff getting pregnant, engaged, etc etc etc, Life happens, this is for sure, but in my time at the beach yesterday, all I could think about was my time then, the present moment, with someone I enjoyed being with, appreciating and feeling in awe for my good fortune.
So here I sit with loads of body moisturizer on, the dishes are still in the sink, the bed is still unmade, but I have gone for my morning walk with my dogs, witnessed the morning sunrise on the bay, talked to my friend, and written this blog and it is not even 8am yet. I pose the question today for a point of ponder. What gives you joy? Are you doing it right now? Can you? When was the last time you felt a good dose of joy in your heart? How can you get some if you haven't in awhile? Don't we all deserve in all of our hard work and busy-ness a few moments each day to connect with that joy and just feel good? Maybe today is the day to eat dessert before you eat dinner, or maybe it is a great piece of bubblegum or calling an old friend you have been meaning to call. Maybe today is the day, you write a loveletter to your partner bringing you back to when you first met. Maybe today is a walk in nature instead of the laundry. Whatever "it" is, we never know tomorrow, so why not be here now and enjoy the it.
I look at my grandparents in the photo, 91 and 93, still driving, living together in their own home. My grandfather still goes to the gym, my grandmother still volunteers at her local temple and they enjoy each others company after 69 years together. If that doesn't give me a pause for gratitude, I am not noticing the important stuff, but I am and I am so grateful to notice. May today give you an opportunity to take notice and experience a little spark of happiness.