Just back from the mountains, it's been over a week since I've written in a regular fashion and my thoughts are tangled and haywire like I haven't taken out the trash or swept in days and the wild animals have moved in and taken over. This morning, after doing a guided meditation on my "Insight Timer" phone app, a group fitness class of yoga-pilates fusion, choking down enough vitamins to revitalize the dead, smoothing on my essential oils facial cleanser for dehydrated skin and reading meditation books that instruct me how not to totally destroy the lives of myself and others, I thought about how high maintenance I've become since I started taking care of myself. Used to be I could roll out of bed in my clothes from the day before, jump into the car and head off for whatever (mis)adventure lay ahead but I had a lot more chemical insulation to protect me from reality at that time. OK, it's true I still have one dress that I will sleep, exercise and teach in for days at a time but I change the under-things and leggings regularly. Back then, who needed 12 step meetings or mental clarity or therapists or folded laundry or helping someone out or even regular showers to feel better? Chaos and dirt was my comfort zone. It was kind of nice not taking care of myself, very low-key and efficient! Sometimes I long for the good ole days of a nutritional plan that consisted of 7-11 Big Bites and Mad Dog 20-20. After an organic salad with home-made curried chicken salad for lunch I made up for it with a glazed donut and an entirely fried dinner straight out of the freezer. The old me is still here, peeking out and sometimes fighting back, all the while being nurtured and grown in stops and starts like someone learning to play the part of a real adult who wants to be present for life, experience joy and die old. Coming back from unstructured time away is hard and sometimes it takes every trick in my self-care artillery to play the part of a functional member of society. The old me would have just said "fuck it" and stayed in bed.