By Pamela Laurence
Imagine a private, special place with a warm, secret pool and waterfall where you bathe your tired body. A place with a stone niche nearby holding natural flowers, roots and oils you use to cleanse and nourish your body, mind and soul. Imagine, too, the soft sounds of happy birds and a faint, fresh breeze which touches your heart as you gaze into your reflecting pond allowing your mind’s thoughts to drift away.
Imagine as you step from your secret spa, you dry and wrap yourself with the warmth of the soft, absorbent cloth that you left hanging in a nearby spot. Your feet are secure and grounded on the earth. Refreshed and in balance again, you move aside the door of branches - joyfully ready to face the world recharged.
What is your bathroom like? Is it a room where you care to spend relaxed, unhurried time or is it a place to get into, do your business and get out? When you shower or bathe, do you do it as a chore such as taking out the garbage? Is there harsh lighting or florescent light casting a blue pallor over your skin? Do you feel cramped and unable to move comfortably in your bathroom space?
Most bathrooms have the toilet right next to the tub or sink. If I had my choice, I would put toilets and bidets in separate rooms off the “bath” room, for I see two completely separate functions here. Elimination is a normal, healthy body function where we release and let go, yet why do we have to have it in our face while we bathe? The toilet is quite a downward energy drain that when seen from tubs, showers or the hallways of our home can, on a subtle level, pull our energy down. I advise you to put a small screen in front of the toilet if there is space to screen it off from view.
At least keep your door to the bathroom closed, especially if you sleep in a room with the bathroom in view from your bed. A fun solution to the downward energy pull of the toilet is to place an object on the toilet tank that represents explosive energy such as a jar of un-popped popcorn or an unopened bottle of champagne, which will, on an unseen energy scale, counterbalance the energy drain.
I see showers, bathtubs and hot tubs as places for meditation, nurturing and wonderful sensuality as well as cleansing (this may be because I am more of a water personality). It is lovely to sit in your tub and feel the water cascading down upon you from the showerheads, washing the day away. There is nothing better than being bathed and lovingly sponged by a loved one - either a mother bathing a child or as lovers bathing each other. There are so many wonderful tubs and shower stalls to choose from. Pick colors that can reflect a soothing scene for you and sizes that fit your body (bodies) and budget. Chances are you drink a lot of bottled water with mindfulness toward your health. Your skin absorbs water too. Get your water checked and add a filter system if needed.
If you are feeling angry or fiery, take a shower or bath. Water puts out fire; bathing will calm you down! A real luxury is to have a hot tub outside in your garden where you can relax and watch the movie of the sky and treetops during all seasons.
Mirrors add to your reflection ponds. However, be mindful of what else the mirror is reflecting - the toilet? the dirty laundry pile? a corner of the moldy wallpaper? Speaking of mold - stay away from carpeting your bathroom floor. Choose a ceramic or stone/marble floor; just be careful of slipping on some of these surfaces when wet.
Ventilation is important in a bathroom. The best choice would be an old fashioned window that can be opened to let in the fresh air. Many ventilation fans are so assaulting to the senses making such a loud racket that you could never relax with that sound; feeling that perhaps, you too, will be sucked up into the vast unknown of the venting system.
I see sinks as nurturing areas where we can brush our teeth, wash our hands and shave. Freestanding sinks are very pretty yet don’t allow space around them for the tools of the trade, i.e. toothbrush, cups, shaving stuff, soap, washcloth and makeup. Beauty is important but function is even more important from a design perspective. Combining beauty and function is the quest. Surround yourself with natural sponges, candles, scented oils, sea salts and special goblets for wine or pure water.
Bathrooms can become your private getaway and nourishing spa. They are rooms to bathe and refresh your soul - allow the flow of the water’s cleansing properties to wash over you. I invite you to create sensual bathrooms and enjoy the art of bathing for yourself and your loved ones.