Witch - Begone! You have no power here!
In The Wizard of Oz, the 1939 sensational movie based on the book by L. Frank Baum, Dorothy Gale, a young girl from Kansas, hurled to Oz because of a terrible tornado, is now in Emerald City standing before the Great Wizard of Oz. He has ordered her to bring him the broomstick of the wicked witch so that he may perform his wizardry and take Dorothy safely back home, which has been her desire since landing in Oz. Dorothy, along with the Scarecrow, the Tin Man, and the Cowardly Lion go to the witch’s dungenous castle. Realizing she is in danger, the witch proclaims, "Well, my little pretty, I can cause accidents too," and proceeds to light a match attempting to set the straw-filled Scarecrow on fire. Dorothy, at that instant, spies a bucket of water and throws the water to put out the fire, but the water also splashes on the witch who exclaims “I'm MELTING! I'm Melting!” Quick thinking by Dorothy saves the day, and as care partners, we must enhance our ability to think quickly to melt our witch away. Witch - Begone! You have no power here.
Mindfulness has been practiced for thousands of years and uses our flow, our ability to fully lose our-self in an activity, to suspend reality to enter the world of our senses, meaning that we pay attention on purpose, in the present moment, and without bias or judgment, to our surroundings. Mindfulness is a valuable resource that doesn’t require an apparatus or going to the gym. At its core, mindfulness is the ability to be conscious in the moment. Forget that to-do list for a few minutes and engage your senses in the moment. It might be helpful to start with a deep cleansing breath: inhale through your nostrils (3 seconds), hold your breath (2 seconds), and then release the breath through your mouth (4 seconds). Then turn your attention to your senses.
Sight - Vision: Pictures and favorite artwork give your eyes a respite. A window with a view or looking up at the sky brings a sense of peacefulness.
Hearing - Sound: Auditory atmospheres help to lift one’s mood. Just hearing your favorite music is magical, bringing back so many wonderful memories.
Taste: Comfort food is food that just feels good – you know what they are! But beware: most of these foods contain high amounts of sugar, salt, or carbohydrates so please eat them in moderation. When I smell apple juice and graham crackers, I am instantly transported to my preschool days and they prove to be just the right amount of sugar, salt, and carbs! Smile.
Touch: Kinesthetic reminders including the awareness of your body, feeling your feet on the floor or rubbing your hands together. Taking a brisk walk is something I participate in almost daily, as my arms swing, and as my legs move one in front of the other, I feel refreshed. Writing in my journal is kinesthetic too.
Smell: Aromatherapy includes the use of natural oils to enhance psychological and physical well-being and one might experience pain relief, mood enhancement, and increased cognitive function. When roses are in bloom, there is nothing better when walking to “stop and smell the roses!” Literally, stop for a moment and take a deep breath.
Self-care Ritual: “A heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others,” explains the wise Wizard of Oz. Be kind on those witchy days for they will pass.