The first month of the year has been a period of reeling and healing.
I missed my deadline for this column a few times because work was crazy, and I somehow couldn’t find the energy on those days to write something or share something of myself in this space.
And so I decided to consciously slow down by eating more and listening to my heart so that I could find my center and plough back into life and work with more energy for the rest of the year.
Heal the body. Every Saturday in January, I made an appointment for a massage, different kinds—Chinese reflexology, traditional hilot, Swedish massage, name it. I felt knotted all over as a result of the busyness and toxicity that December and the first week of January brought upon me.
For two and a half hours every Saturday I holed myself up in a spa, either with dear friends or my daughter. The three best and most reasonable ones I found were the Mandarine at Westage in Alabang, The Spa at Eastwood, and Blue Water in Ortigas.
Hands down, the treatment I enjoyed the most was the one my good friend, the novelist-journalist Criselda Yabes, and I had at the Mandarine, which Cris aptly describes as one that makes you feel reborn. If only the south weren’t too far from where we both live, we would head back every weekend. It was pure bliss from start to finish.
Heal your heart and find a happy place. Surprisingly, I discovered a mall can be a happy place, and not just for shopping. One Friday evening after work, as the usual case is, traffic was a killer on both C-5 and Edsa. Rather than slug my way through two-and-a-half hours in traffic, I found myself making a detour to SM Aura at the Fort. Parking was a breeze on a Friday night, and the mall was not at all congested.
The shops at Aura are interesting and the entire mall, despite the controversy surrounding it, just has a light and happy vibe to it. There are a lot of great dining choices, a beautiful chapel for a sanctuary, and an outdoor garden where you can enjoy the breeze. I love how I can just walk around and hit my 10,000 steps/day quota without even noticing the time.
Heal your spirit. Making a conscious effort to find quiet time for inner work truly does wonders. Getting up a little earlier than usual to write and reflect really helped me reconnect with my center and with God. Being open to various healing modalities helps open up your spirit and your heart. My godsister, Maricar, told me about theta healing, and skeptic that I am, I was cautious. However, I went and tried it out, and was very much surprised by the results.
Scientists have discovered that the theta brain frequency has been found to alleviate stress, reduce anxiety, facilitate deep relaxation, improve mental clarity and creative thinking, reduce pain, and promote positive feelings.
Theta healing is a technique that combines science and spirituality to identify and instantly transform deeply held blocks, negative beliefs and traumas in the unconscious mind. It is a technique, and not a religion, and is not affiliated with any religious doctrine. It is compatible with any spiritual or religious belief system.
I went through one session to see if it could help me with a particular issue. My “healer” and I worked and processed it together for an hour. I felt quite exhausted after the session, but days later, and it has been a week now as I write this, the ill feelings or fears that I used to hold on to are gone. I just could not locate them within me anymore.
I’ve always held on to the belief that all healing comes from God, and this modality was probably one of them. I have never been as peaceful in my life. So for whatever it’s worth, I know the session was very helpful in transforming my thoughts and changing my heart.
Friendship is healing. Each week this month, I chose to spend quality and quantity time with friends who are sisters, and with friends whom I had not seen for a very long time. I reconnected with my godsister, spent time with friends I have known since I was seven years old, broke bread with friends who know my heart so well, and shared breakfast with warm, wise older women whom I admire and respect.
The busyness of life and work sometimes makes us sacrifice parts of ourselves, and in the process we feel fragmented. But it is in those cracks, if we are brave enough to look through them, that the light comes in, and slowly, by God’s grace, we find the courage and the means to mend.
I saw a poster this week that made me pause: “One day, someone is going to hug you so tight that all of your broken pieces will stick back together.” That’s a lovely thought when you think about it. However, that’s also putting the burden on someone else.
At the end of the day, whether it’s an illness, a relationship, or fragments of your heart, mind spirit that need healing—after you’ve done what you possibly can, you only need to surrender, stay open, and allow God to hold you tight, and together, you both put back those broken pieces until you are whole once more.
After all, He’s the Divine healer, and there is nothing that He cannot mend.
Follow the author on Twitter @cathybabao or e-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org