Monday, March 25, 2013

Our Table for One

Hard to imagine now, but I was actually nervous in 1994 when my friend Liz gave me a gift certificate for a massage - my first ever.  Back then, hugs and sloppy kisses from my children meant everything to me but I missed the sensation of touch, the taking that comes with intentional human touch. My tense body never totally relaxed in the first session, but I learned the stress-relief benefits of slowing down my racing mind so I could think clearer. . . that deep relaxation and renewal that comes wtih slow and stable breathing.  The happy hormones awaken (serotonin and oxytocin) and nothing feels big enough to become an issue because body, mind and spirit are interconnected, at least for a bit, and you feel whole, and very much alive.

So fast forward, and Shawn and I value our indulgent time on the table, when a trained professional guides their hands over our dehydrated skin and pamper us.  It's a treat best served when not feeling on top of your game, when you might need a fleeting hour of someone else taking care of you.

I had been flirting with the idea of getting a table, and learning a few styles and techniques - to take care of our own physical vitality, mental clarity and emotional balance.  Even though our nest is quiet (and darn clean!), we still deal with stress and all the pressures of our little lives.

So we bought a table (thank you EBay)!  And we're learning basic massage techniques (thank you YouTube!).  This isn't weird or kinky - this is physiology!  And while I don't know that I will get my LMT (licensed massage therapist), because I'm not sure I want to devote 600-1000 hours of precious discretionary time into formal training, I'm a learner and there's much to discover!  We're having a blast, learning some basic reflexology (there's a spot on the bottom of the foot that alleviates headaches) and ways to relieve chronic muscle tension in a way that invigorates blood flow, detoxifies the body, improves circulation. 

My favorite oil -
Lavender Lemon Zum Oil
There are many health benefits to receiving massage therapy on a regular basis:
Relieves stress
Encourages relaxation

Improves circulation
Improves posture
Lowers blood pressure
Helps manage pain
Relaxes muscles
Improves flexibility
Improves breathing
Relieves tension headaches
Strengthens immune system
Decreases depression

In an effort to further cut costs, here's a recipe I plan to try soon:

Stress Relief Massage Oil Recipe
  • 10 teaspoons grapeseed oil
  • 10 drops Petitgrain essential oil
  • 10 drops Lavender essential oil
  • 5 drops Ylang Ylang essential oil
Combine the ingredients in a bottle or small bowl and shake gently until well blended. Pour into a small bottle and seal it.  Warm the oil before the massage.
Our Table for One -
Earthlite Harmony DV Portable Massage Table

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