Updated: May 18
Holidays seem to always come with expectations, don't they? So waking up on Mother's Day sure came with the expectation to feel good, loved, and pampered.
In reality, Mother’s Day started rough for me. I woke up feeling…off. More off than the usual kind of off. Whether it was the slow drag out of bed or lack of feeling excited about deciding what to do with my day off. I was finding it hard to look people in the eye, struggling to connect. I felt as if an overall wall was put up between me and the world that hindered my ability to be present. Like I was in a fishbowl. I found an increased lack of motivation and an occasional rise of feeling like crying but never could. I was about to cancel the rest of my mother’s day plans.
As someone who struggles to accept moments of discomfort whether physically or emotionally (a trait that’s not always healthy), I looked to resolve this as soon as possible. Whenever I feel "off" I first ask myself, "Is this tied to a situation going on in my life or do I just seem chemically off?". And while I have had some stress lately, this time felt like good old random offness.
So what do I need? I asked…
Maybe I need exercise? To do something that usually brings me joy? So I went to pole dance class. But as the class went on my mood didn’t change. And after class, when I usually want to watch the work I did, I had no interest in looking at my phone. Okay, that didn’t work. So immediately I booked an infrared sauna session with some extra Class Pass points I had. Maybe I need to pamper myself? A little self-care? A little detoxing?
I slugged into the new biohacking spa down the road. As I was checking in for the sauna I saw a special: Cryotherapy for $19. Well, that sounded absolutely terrifying. …Maybe terrifying is what I need. Maybe If I reminded myself of my resilience and accomplished something scary and difficult, that would do the trick.
I also know how powerful cold therapy is for mental health. My friend Neil Jackson posts often about how he uses cold showers to keep his Depression at bay. The oh-so-famous, Wim Hoff has taught the world the benefits of Cold therapy. Reduce my inflammation? Release endorphins? Sounds pretty good.
But would it be painful? Would I freeze to death? What if I panic? Will I damage my lungs? Freeze my vagina off? The questions wouldn’t stop pouring out of me. I checked my body three times for jewelry, wiped every possible surface of me dry, and continued to repeat the same questions. But then the door opened, nitrogen poured out and I entered the chamber.
The song Big Energy poured through the speakers. As my nose hairs started to feel like they were crystalizing, I focused on breathing through my mouth as instructed. My lungs would have moments of fearful quivers. I kept reminding myself I was safe (hopefully); to calm my breath and focus on the music.
And then it was done. That’s it.
I could have gone longer. I could have had colder. I surprised myself. Impressed with my ability to stay grounded in a terrifying experience. The door opened and I gave a cheerful yelp. And it worked. The temperature of my skin had lowered 30 degrees. My energy level and overall vibration rose a million degrees. I was out of my slump and finished mother’s day strong.
So while my Mother’s Day was nothing like I thought it would be, it was everything I needed it to be.
If you are in the Boise or Meridian area, you can get your first Cryotherapy session for only $19 at RESTORE. Just tell them Sarah Breck sent you ;)