Tag Archives: photo-shopping

Self Care Day

Robin Botie of Ithaca, New York, photoshops a child sleeping in a slipper-shaped bed to visualize away her back pain.When the pain in my back got so bad that I couldn’t sleep left-side or right, or even belly-up, I went shuffling to my doctor’s where the nurse weighed me, took my blood pressure, asked where it hurt, and finally looked at me, cocking her head, and said, “Have you been depressed lately?” At which point I broke down into a drippy, wailing mess.

Without going into the whole story of my daughter’s dying seven years ago, I wanted to let the nurse know I felt entitled to some depression. But the question left me speechless. I stood there shaking and sobbing, looking anywhere but at her eyes, wondering if I had liver cancer, and wishing I could just curl up to sleep. Hanging on the wall was a children’s book illustration of a sleeping family. They were floating in the sky, each member cozily cocooned in their own fuzzy, quilted slipper-shaped bed.

I returned home with comfort food from Wegmans, Aleve, and a prescription for physical therapy sessions, and spent the next several hours visualizing my pain away in Photoshop. I’m calling it a Self Care Day.


What do you do to take care of yourself?

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Make Life Better for Others

Robin Botie of Ithaca, New York, Photoshops a friend who went to Nepal to build shelters for earthquake victimsOkay. This is the situation: My friend Nicole is in Nepal helping to build shelters for earthquake victims. In her blog, she wrote about a platter of flowers, “red tika that the elder blessed and smudged on our foreheads.” For much of the past week I carried in my head an image of Nicole amid the ruins with tika. I spent so much time trying to make it visible through Photo-shopping that I’m running late. If I sit here writing, I won’t be able to visit two other friends in two different nursing homes today. I won’t be able to finish the photo project I’m working on for a bereaved mother I met online.

So I’m leaving you to fill in the blanks, connect the thoughts. Young Nicole following her heart and reaching out to strangers across the world whose lives have been devastated, the villages in Lalit Pur where they lost 95% of their infrastructure yet still found red flowers to give that symbolize gratitude and long life, and my own small efforts to make life better for others.

All I wanted to say is, we need to take care of each other. We give what we can. And if you’re feeling lonely or directionless, or you think your life is in ruins, go help someone else. It may make you feel like you’ve been blessed with red flowers.

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