Sep 16, 2009

On the Receiving End

by Marielle Carlisle

Today I basked in complete bliss at the Willow Stream Spa at the Princess Resort. This week is SpaWeek (it's like cash-for-clunkers for the spa industry), and since our little family is taking a staycation, I decided to completely pamper myself.

I've mentioned before how I work at the Golden Door Spa, which is a big rival of the Princess. Being a massage therapist, you probably expect me to get at least one massage a month, right? Yeah, no.

I get the customary Mother's Day gift at the local day spa, and the occasional training massage from a co-worker.

It's hard for me to spend money on myself, especially when there's food to buy and bills to pay.

But I feel like such a phony when I recommend getting a massage to my clients, and then they ask me "well, how many massages do you get?" to which I reply "well, funny thing, not many, but it's like how the cobbler's kids have no shoes." And yes, I have said that to my clients.

Today was different! I visited a rival property, and was blown away by the service and amenities. I used the elliptical for 30 minutes, then sat in the waterfall mineral bath, swam in the pool, sat poolside while reading my book, sat in the hot tub, evaporated in the steam room, showered, enjoyed my hour Serenity Massage, showered again, then ate a complimentary cranberry cookie and cup of prickly pear lemonade. It was heaven. I was in such a state of euphoria that even coming home to cranky kids and cat throw-up didn't faze me.

It's not like I forget that a massage feels wonderful, because I know they do. But I just don't remember the peace, the happiness, the calm, the total relaxation as well. Being on the receiving end serves as a reminder that even though being a massage therapist is my 'job' and it's 'work,' it means a whole lot more to the person getting the massage. This kind of reminder pushes me to be a better therapist.

So how can we be on the receiving end of our writing work? By reading a good book? By listening to a good talk?

Whatever it is, let it serve as a reminder that though we are working hard for our money, it means a whole lot more to the people who are reading it.


  1. I don't think of it as pampering myself but as a renewal of sorts Marielle. And we all need it. The only massages I've ever gotten was from my sister while she studied it in school. I think it was the nurse in her, but instead of relaxed, I was sore...can that be right? ha.

  2. Wow, that sounds so fantastic.

    Are you going to tell your co-workers about it??

  3. Sounds heavenly, Marielle...and I love your analogy. It is easy to forget the purpose of what we do and how it can benefit others. we often don't realize how well we can serve others through our writing or any other talent we have been gifted. Thanks!

  4. Excellent Blog! What a wonderful day you had. Right now I am so tired that I think I would have slept through it all, so admire all the things you did as well.

  5. I like your analogy, Marielle. It's easy to forget the benefits to those on the receiving end of what we're trying to do. And your relaxing day sounds wonderful...


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