Slap me until I relax (Day 146, Year 3)

When I go to the nail salon, I am often paired with the technician who I call the “slap lady.” She routinely slaps my hands and feet to force me to relax.

It sort of reminds me of when the phlebotomist ties a tourniquet to my arm and flicks the inside of my elbow to get a vein to rise to the surface. Instead, the nail tech is slapping me to get a better angle on painting my toe and finger nails. Sometimes I think this act is more technical than a blood draw. I know it isn't but still the whole thing seems much more important because of the slapping. 

I don’t really mind the slapping. I won’t relax otherwise. There are just too many to do list items coursing through my veins, stiffening me and causing me to resist becoming fluid like the “slap lady” wants. She once told me that I was like a corpse. Which made me want to ask how she knows what it is like to paint the nails of a corpse. I mean I suppose someone has to do this when requested.

I never ask because I am a little scared of her, you know, because of the slapping. 

I have a hard time relaxing even though all I want is time to relax. Sometimes I make to do lists about relaxation: meditate, read, list to smooth jazz, nap. When I follow my relaxation to do list I find myself racing through the items so I can cross them off. 

And racing is not a verb to describe the fluid, dreamlike, ahhhhh state that is relaxation. The mere existence of those lists is maybe why I am so chronically tired and at the same time, constantly on the move.

Maybe I should ask the “slap lady” to slap those lists right out of my hand. 

Even when I have a few moments to relax, like right now in the warm car waiting for my middle to finish swim team practice, I find myself thinking what I can get done in these few moments. Today, I choose this blog; because once we are home it’s time to prepare dinner for my kids and find something to wear to dinner with my husband and check all my emails one more time before closing those accounts for the weekend. 

I prefer busy to the opposite. I prefer movement to sitting still. But I don’t think my body was always so stiff, like a corpse, with things to do. It’s like a chronic disease all this doing; but I am scared if I stop I won’t be able to get started again. 

I don’t know if I’ve always been this way. I know this season of life is filled to the brim; but then again if there is a life to fill, no matter the season, there are so many things waiting to jump right in.