Letting go…

J gave me a massage gift certificate for Christmas and on Thursday night I had an appointment for a massage…a two hour deep tissue massage.  I’ve been having a lot of back pain and I was really looking forward to it.

It was the least relaxing…but probably most theraputic…massage I’ve ever had.  I felt so bad for the therapist.  I practically jumped off the table ten times.  Pretty much every place she touched was tight and sore and knotted.  She said my back muscles were like ropes and I was holding onto stress and tension in every muscle of my body.

By the end of the two hours, my shoulders were a few inches below my ears.  My spine was a little longer.  The horrendous pain in my hip was downgraded to just bad.  I felt much better.  And this week…I get to do it all over again.

I’m so stressed out that I need hours of massage therapy to make me feel like a normal person again.  That’s not right.

So I made a decision while I was laying on that table, getting the stress kneaded out of my body…a decision that nothing is worth that kind of pain.  I have to stop worrying about every little thing.  If I miss the train in the morning there will always be another one.  If something at work goes wrong it can always be fixed.  If things don’t get finished the way I want or expect them to…well, tomorrow is another day and it will all get done eventually.  It will all get fixed.  It will all be ok.

For the past few days, I’ve been trying to stay aware of how tense my muscles are and I’ve been actively reminding myself to relax.  It’s amazing how many times a day I have to consciously relax my shoulders and remind myself to take deeps breaths.

I think I do a pretty good job of focusing on the bright side and finding the joy in life.  Now I have to work on not worrying about things over which I have no control.  I have to work on letting go of the stress…especially other people’s stress.  And I have to focus on relaxing.

So far, so good.  I didn’t look at my Blackberry all weekend.  Last night, I put my computer away and just relaxed to a few episodes of Glee instead of trying to multi-task.  And I got a few nights of really good sleep.  It’s not easy to relax and it’s not easy to just let go of the stress and the worry…but I’m getting better at it every day.  Hopefully, when this week’s massage rolls around I’ll want to jump off the table far less often.


  1. Yes. You should try to be less stressed. I would like to also. I think my life would be much better if I didn’t check my work email when I’m at home on the weekend. There is nothing ever dire enough that needs my immediate attention. And you can’t control other people so don’t let them stress you out. I’m definitely trying to do that as well.

  2. Let’s tackle this journey together, shall we? I’ve been trying to let go and focus on the small pleasures in life. I have stopped stressing about my blog, looking at the internet at work (fuck em), and have not turned on my computer at night. It’s time for me to focus in me. Right? You and I deserve the best, dammit!

  3. A whole weekend without your blackberry? Color me impressed!

  4. Good girl! I now have massage covered in my benefits I’m constantly telling the boy to go but he insists he’d rather be tense than have a stranger touch him. Weirdo. I think I know the answer to this one but have you thought of taking a yoga class? I ask because two of my favourite parts are at the beginning when they tell you to concentrate on slowing your breath and at the end when you are supposed to thank yourself for taking an hour for yourself. I always spend that time giving myself a little pay on the back to say “good job me – way to tell the world to relax and do something just for yourself!” You might hate it and will likely want another massage the next day when you hurt. But I like it – so thought I’d share. XO

  5. I think this is an awesome revelation. All too often I don’t any of us do this enough. Mike’s been getting really worked up over things that I feel like are just not something to get that tense over. {other people being idiots, rude people, annoying thoughtless people, aka the ME generation}… I keep trying to remind him that him getting so angry WON’T change them it only changes/hurst him. Not sure where this came from in me. I get worked up too, I have road rage but I guess I’ve been trying my best to do as you do and realize some small things aren’t the end of the world… maybe I need a massage too. I ask Mike to rub my shoulders and i usually come out of my seat when he barely touches them…. ball of stress and didn’t know it maybe?

    Good luck with this – it can only help you in all ways! :)

  6. You and I are one and the same – I actively have to tell myself to relax my shoulders or unclench my hands…which is probably why I am one of Rob’s best clients.
    I think you are setting on the right path, though – you can only control your reaction to things and that reaction might as well be to just roll with it.

  7. Amanda Austin says:

    Its so so hard to let go of stress. I am terrible about this too and also realize I need to stop stressing when I feel that telltale pain in my shoulders. I have improved but it’s a fight every day. I’m prone to anxiety and when it builds up its really bad. I hope you can cut down on the worry and if you need someone to encourage you? You know where to find me!

  8. Awww, I’m so glad you had this experience to teach you the importance of slowing down and taking care of yourself and your body’s needs. Working in the city and dealing with commuting issues, stress at work, constant emails, etc, is bound to take it’s toll. It’s amazing the tension we carry without realizing but at least you are being proactive about it. I’m glad you made another appointment and hope it’ll help you further.

    Also, I’m impressed you made it a whole weekend without your BlackBerry. I go nuts if I leave my phone in the other room. LOL!

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