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Mellow Your Fellow: Father’s Day Gift Idea & GIVEAWAY

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CONTEST CLOSED. Random.org chose #8, #1 and #4 as the three winners of the Float Tank experience through A New Spirit Wellness Center & Spa. JoAnn, Eileen and T, please contact Lori for information on getting your prize. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Oh, yes. I was tense going in. Two kinds of tense.

I was tense from fear: would I need to claw my way out? Would I get too cold? Would I go crazy from an hour of nothing?

And I was tense from expectations: would this truly change my life? Would I emerge seeing brighter colors, feeling serene and balanced? Would just one hour pull the toxins from my body?

Oh, yes, you could say I had some tension on my way in to the Flotation Tank (“sensory deprivation tank” is SO last century).

Rob (my husband) and I met owner Andrea Leigh for a complimentary flotation session (regularly $40) at A New Spirit Wellness Center & Spa in NW Denver.

I sought an experience in mindfulness and Rob was hoping to mend a running injury that had been plaguing him. Ever on the alert for you, gentle readers, I was also looking for a unique Father’s Day gift idea for Mile High Mamas to offer up to their hairier halves.

Andrea led us to a peaceful front room where we filled out a brief form and read an FAQ sheet about floating (example #1: there are 800 lbs of Epsom salts dissolved in each tank’s 10 inches of water, which renders a body weightless; example #2: the tanks are drained and cleaned between each user — yay). I picked up a book from the coffee table that extolled all the aMAZing things we were in for:

  • body healing
  • mind clarity
  • deep relaxation
  • release of endorphins
  • heightened senses after the experience
  • integration between mind and body
  • a return to balance in the body’s systems

Next, we were ushered into a private shower room and told to rinse off our bodies and shampoo our hair with the provided supplies. And to don the supplied robes when we were ready to go into the float room.

In a dim, mystical-smelling room, Andrea showed us how the two tanks work. Rob’s was the bigger of the two, but mine was bigger than I’d imagined. My fears of claustrophobia evaporated.

Andrea showed us how to open and close the tank doors, where the call buttons were, and explained that if our necks were uncomfortable from the weightlessness, we could use the within-reach Styrofoam noodles as support. She pointed out a basket full of earplugs in case we wanted to use them, since our ears would be underwater (we both took advantage).

Once all our questions were answered, she said she’d come back and knock on the tanks in an hour, and she left us.

Rob and I took of our robes, looked at each other with what-the-heck eyes and climbed into our respective pods.

I quickly grew acclimated to the dark and the weightlessness. I became aware of my breathing first — deep and slow — and then my heartbeat. It was a constant rhythm that kept me in touch with my otherwise disappeared body. It felt liberating to have my sense of touch disabled for just a bit.

My mind chattered. I wrote and rewrote this post in my head. I kept checking in with my body to make sure it was still there. Both the temperature and the density matched my body, and it was as if I were both suspended and supported by the universe. Like being comfy in a womb but with the luxury of space in which to spread out.

Eventually my thoughts did take a break, and there was a lovely little fractal show projected on the inside of my eyelids. But it ended and I was unable to get another one going.

That was it. About when I thought it would end, I heard the knock on the tank. Both Rob and I emerged, put on our robes and went back into the shower room to clean up and get dressed.

We both felt amazingly relaxed, as if we’d just had a deep-tissue massage, but without the pain.

Rob’s calf IS feeling better. And I DID get to experience a few moments of deep mindfulness. While floating was not a life-changing experience, it was pleasant enough and I am eager to go again. Andrea says that each session is different, and I can’t wait to see what happens next time.

GIVEAWAY: Guess what? Andrea wants three of YOU (or your hairier halves) to become floaters at A New Spirit Wellness Center & Spa. To enter, simply leave a comment. No fancy-schmancy verbiage is required, but feel free to take this opportunity to WHY why you would like to try floating. We will randomly draw three winners on June 12, so the deadline to enter is that last moment of June 11. Please make sure your email address is easily accessible.

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Comments
  • comment avatar Eileen June 4, 2009

    sounds interesting.

  • comment avatar Amber Johnson June 4, 2009

    This is seriously the COOOLEST idea for a gift! And I love your write-up. Entertaining as always. I’m off to spread the word. 🙂

  • comment avatar Alison June 4, 2009

    Sounds sweet! (Or perhaps salty) Either way I am definitely up for the chance!

  • comment avatar T June 4, 2009

    That sounds like an amazing experience. I’d love to try it!

  • comment avatar Savvy Mom June 4, 2009

    My husband and I have a 3 year old daughter and another daughter will make her debut in August! He also has 3 sisters and has been surrounded by all the revitalizing and pampering that we enjoy as a women all of his life. Believe it or not, he enjoys being pamperred too. Don’t all men, really? He is currently doing NAET treatment for allergy elimination. This has been a big step for him as this is an alternative type medicine and not the traditional medicine he is used too. So far, it has turned a skeptic into a believer. I truly believe he would throroughly enjoy connecting the body healing, mind clarity, deep relaxation, release of endorphins and the entire experience in a balanced approach.

    “Let yourself be open and life will be easier” -Budda

  • comment avatar Laura June 4, 2009

    Oh my gosh! This sounds really neat. I wanna do it! I’ll bet it would help my joint pain tremendously. I’m always looking for something that’s going to bring relief to my arthritic, old lady body.

  • comment avatar Pam June 4, 2009

    This sounds like it would be a wonderfully calming experience. I would love to try it.

  • comment avatar JoAnn, The Casual Perfectionist http://thecasualperfectionist.com June 4, 2009

    That sounds like quite the experience! I’m intrigued!

    I do have a question for you…did they provide suits, or did you use your own, or did you not wear suits?

    Regardless of the attire, this sounds great! 🙂

  • comment avatar Lori in Denver June 4, 2009

    No suits!

    Although there’s no law against wearing one.

    i don’t think 🙂

  • comment avatar Denise June 4, 2009

    Sounds intriguing. I’m looking for a cool gift for my husband for father’s day. Just not sure I could convince him to partake in this, but I would love to try it. He does love a good massage, so maybe he would try it?

  • comment avatar Mitch McDad June 5, 2009

    Hey Lori,
    I just listen to a podcast describing the experience and the presenter likened it to being on psychedelic drugs with regard to the light show, he also said that two hours goes by fairly quick so I was wondering if you can purchase longer sessions at this place so I’m too old be taking mushrooms. 🙂

  • comment avatar Lori in Denver June 5, 2009

    Mitch: yup, you can stay longer.

    Give us a report on the mushroom show!

  • comment avatar mimi June 5, 2009

    I thought this sounded like something different and out of the ordinary for me and my hubby to try!

    We could use a little peace a quiet! And hopefully some much needed relaxation…and good time together. We have two 18 month old toddlers (they are 6 weeks apart…long story). We are freakin’ tired! But in a really, really, really good way.

  • comment avatar Liz June 5, 2009

    As a working mother of two girls I am surrounded by constant talking. Although usually the sweet voices of my 3 and 5 year olds, an hour of quite might be just what I need.

  • comment avatar Jenny June 5, 2009

    Wow! My husband and I would love this! Thanks for sharing your experience.

  • comment avatar Melissa June 6, 2009

    What an out of the ordinary experience and gift! I’m sure my husband would be game to try it if it meant quiet, alone time. :o)

  • comment avatar Jessica June 6, 2009

    I remember when Lisa and Homer did that on the Simpsons! I didn’t know it was real! I ought to check it out.

  • comment avatar Roxanne June 6, 2009

    I would love to try this…. you have to be game to try new things at least once! 🙂

  • comment avatar Tanya Ishikawa June 7, 2009

    Anything in water sounds nice.

  • comment avatar Jenna Hallock June 8, 2009

    I love any excuse to be in or near water – even minus the weightlessness, which would be nice.

    We are in the middle of a job transition which has been very stressful, so this could be “just what the doctor ordered!”

    And what an unusual way to experience some time for relaxation and meditation. It makes me wonder if there are other places in the Denver area that offer this same treatment?

  • comment avatar Duffy June 9, 2009

    I would love to try this – I am in desperate need of some forced peacefulness and quiet space to just be. (I have a 4 month old) and would love this chance to reconnect with my body after going through so many changes in the last year.

  • comment avatar Kim V June 9, 2009

    It sounds so refreshing! I love massages and trying new methods and techniques to relax. I incurred an injury years ago through a deep tissue massage and every now and then I need to have someone try to help ease the pain. Would love to try this, the pain is back, I’m have a 14 month old and a 3 year old that cannot understand why mommy can’t just pick them up and carry them at their beacon call…

  • comment avatar Savvy Mom June 19, 2009

    Will you be listing the winners of this contest?

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