Lammas, Baking and Mental Health

Mental health is a biggie for me and I am not going to hide the fact that at times I really do suffer.  For a couple of months I had been ‘hiding away’ somewhat and having a break from my work anyway.

I felt I needed it, as we all do sometimes, and that was fine.  We need to honour our own ebb and flow (particularly in the case of women) and come to an understanding of our own natural rhythm and cycles of feeling/mood/energy and inclinations

We seem to be not allowed to stop in this hectic world and take a break.  I actually consider myself lucky to be self employed and have no one telling me what to do (though that is not without it’s challenges!)

And so I had had a really good break and just hid away from things for a couple of months, just focussing on family.  I was just feeling ready to come back with new and fresh energy when … BOOM… my dear old Pa died ☹

This of course was a huge blow and there is not room here to tell of how this is for us as a family.  Certainly feels like the end of an era

Now, as one who believes in Spirit – that life force that permeates all of Nature- I know that actually my father is not really gone.  He is fine now.  But still I am right back there with that horrible empty and lost feeling ☹

I went away with my daughter last week to a wonderful community where we often go for our holidays.  What kind and welcoming people they are there.  I confided in them my problems and they were so lovely

Afterwards I was walking past the kitchen and one of the young volunteers who helps out was shaping some bread dough.  I promptly joined in (it is that kind of place) and we chatted and kneaded the dough and… almost like magic … I felt well again.  Well inside.  My mental state of doom and sadness had (albeit in that moment) totally lifted  

Never underestimate the healing power of doing a craft with your hands.  Whether it be baking bread or basket making or painting or knitting or any of these lovely things.  The list could go on and on.  I have tried all these things and with each one there is a sense of being immersed totally in the moment.

The same could be said of singing (in fact the hoilday was a singing camp and the healing power of singing for your soul is HUGE – shame I just about lost my voice though!)

Come and bake bread with us next time we have a Community Bake.  Or have a go yourself.  I have not been bothered to even get out my baking stuff for a while but I have promised myself that I will do tonight

For today is the 1st August and the festival of Lammas – it is the festival to mark the annual wheat harvest, and is the first harvest festival of the year

On this day it was customary to bring to church a loaf made from the new crop, which began to be harvested at Lammastide, which falls at the halfway point between the summer Solstice and Autumn September Equinox.  This is surprisingly not a bad article from The Metro about Lammas

Happy Baking everyone and hope to see you soon!

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