You bought a new notebook for this? After the build-up and the vortex of accomplishment and the go big on resolutions hoopla, the first thing I have to say to myself is drink water?!
A few years ago I went through RCIA at the Newman Center. During the session on Baptism, the leaders asked us to reflect on water as a symbol of renewal and rebirth. One of the other students was a Physician Assistant. After the talk, my new friend and I walked together to our cars.
“I never thought about the symbolism of water,” he said. “But in my job, when people come in suffering from cold or flu symptoms and we’ve done all we can for them, most of the time we tell them to go home and take a hot shower and drink water. And it always works. Taking a hot shower and drinking water makes everybody feel better.”
My friend’s parking lot revelation about water has stuck with me in the way the quietest conversations often do. We are made of water. Everybody knows this. Water is life. Everyone in California would weep with gratitude every time we felt a raindrop if we thought we could spare the water.
I hate when people tell me that we are 99 percent water or whatever it is because I feel like we would be see-through if that was the case. Which would be cool in a way but also embarrassing. People would be able to observe that maybe I ate a bowl of ice cream with fudge last night because it was New Year’s Eve and I was up past my bedtime even if my better judgement had gone to sleep hours before I did. My stomach hurt all night. Nobody would want to see what’s going on inside there right now. It’s a bad scene.
Water says, that’s okay. Everything is washable.
What if I take the best possible care of myself today? What would my life look like if I took the best possible care of myself in every moment of this first day of the year?
I would start with a glass of water upon waking. Even before coffee. I would drink three quarts of water throughout the day. So today I will.
Write about memories of water. Seaside vacations, days at the beach or the pool or the lake or the river. It’s interesting that we are drawn to water sources during periods of rest and relaxation. How did you learn to swim? What are your earliest memories of playing in water?
If you are religious, what is the significance of water in your faith? What incidents of water prevail in your faith’s story? How is water destructive, and how is it a symbol of renewal and hope?
What would it look like if you took the best possible care of yourself today? What would you do first thing? What would you plan for? What obstacles prevent you from taking the best possible care of yourself every day?