Last week I was in a funk, not the good Chaka Khan kind but the rubbish 'woe is me' kind so I decided to make my mission about counting my many blessings or at least one. Unlimited access to clean and most importantly hot water.
New mothers talk a lot about showering, partly because it's one of the first things to fall by the wayside after a baby takes over your life. As an aside I am so annoyed I didn't just leave the kid in a baby bouncer and shower for hours at time because now I have one episode Peppa Pig to get all my lady stuff sorted. Anyhoo in order to get some perspective I spent a week accepting that in a lot of ways I have it easy and I did this with one small change. For one week I was going to have my daily shower cold. I figured if I started the day with a cold dose of reality maybe that sense of perspective would carry me through until bedtime.
The first day was easy. I just didn't shower. I totally meant to shower, if anyone asks I absolutely wash every day, but so many other important things kept getting in the way - like cleaning my dishwasher filter. By lunchtime I figured it was only me and the boy at home and so what if he thought I was smelly. I birthed him.
On day two I decided to grow a pair and went for it. It was two and a half minutes of hell. I do not like the cold. Being cold is such a sorry state; I pretty much wear an anorak to bed and still take a hot water bottle with me. At first I tried to perform some self hypnosis and convince myself that the water falling onto my body was steaming hot but after a minute I decided I just needed to get on with it. I finished the job vaguely clean and very grumpy.
On day three I woke up and decided to take my son swimming. Although Roscoe loves swimming, I very rarely do this because for some reason my son thinks he's an Olympic swimmer in a toddler's body and insists on breaking free of my grasp and launching himself into the water as often as possible. He then screams bloody murder when I try to take him home. It was only as I was holding my howling child under the pool showers that I realised I WAS A FAKER. I had undertaken my most hated parental chore only to experience the hot water of our post swim shower. Let's just pause and think about the absurdity of that, I had given myself a world of pain just to avoid three minutes of it. In how many other areas was I making my life very difficult just to avoid getting on with something a little bit difficult?*
The next morning I just went for it! I turned the taps on full and hit that shower like a boss! And it felt good; it felt invigorating; it felt like I was a person that just got sh*t done. And that's how the week went on. The tasks that I was hiding in the back of my notebook got brought to the fore; I said yes to challenges when in my hot shower days I might have been inclined to say no.
In the end I really appreciated my week of cold showers and as I write I am sitting in a fluffy dressing gown following an extra long, extra hot bath. A bath which may well have been the greatest bath of my life; a bath during which I was grateful that every time the temperature dropped even minutely, I was able to top up with freely available hot water straight from the tap. A bath which showed me that sometimes to accept you've it easy, you've got to make things a little bit difficult.
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