As survivors, caregivers, social workers and people in general we know how important it is to give back and help others. But how many of us recognize the importance of self-care? Self-care is a skill I’ve been working on for quite some time now. My schedule is pretty packed — between statewide speaking events, curriculum trainings, working with experts to develop new ways to keep kids and families safe and trying to maintain some semblance of personal life (ha!), it’s easy to forget to BREATHE and take care of myself.
One of the ways I practice self-care is by listening to music. I’ve always found an escape in the rhythm, beats and lyrics of a good song. Every night I try to turn on some music and take some time to dance with my favorite partner, Blair. Our band of choice is Dave Matthews Band (Fun fact: DMB is basically all I listen to during the Walk). There is just something so different about his sound — no matter how many times I listen to Grey Street, Two Step, etc., I discover a different beat or sound that I hadn’t heard before. So, I was very excited for my annual DMB concert weekend in West Palm Beach.
Dave and the band never disappoint, but this year’s concert was especially meaningful to me. They played a song that, to the best of my knowledge, hasn’t been recorded. It describes the feelings of a father who learns that his child was sexually abused by a preacher and the wave of emotions that overcome him afterward. As you can imagine, this hit very close to home for me. Hearing Dave sing about something my dad and I know all too well, I found a new level of love and respect for him and the band. I hope he does record the song because it gives a voice to the voiceless and spreads the message that “It’s OK to Tell.”
I was also SUPER lucky to have bumped into Dave Matthews himself after the show! I only had a moment to talk with him, but felt so fortunate to be able to thank him for all that his music has done for me personally and for the message he shared in the lyrics of that song.
What do you do to take care of yourself? Music, walking, exercise, crafting? Share your comments below! I’d love to hear from you.