What in the hell is flotation therapy? Yup. That was my initial thought when my husband surprised me with this birthday activity. I was 4 months pregnant and the belly was definitely starting to show. I was in desperate need of a break, so I didn’t care what we did as long as I was able to relax. I’m also a Leo and we are known to be adventurous and daring! So we made our way into the city.
Now, I am most certainly not ungrateful for having experienced this new adventure. My husband and I plan very intimate birthdays and we truly try to focus on making lasting memories – not buying the latest designer threads. All my frugal peeps raise your hands! ☺ Anyhow, as we were approaching Moreland Ave (Atlanta) I could not help but wonder why I was required to wear swim attire. When we arrived I saw that we were in close proximity to Vortex Burger and I got super excited – Little Five Points is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Atlanta. It’s full of art and hipsters – definitely my kind of crowd. When we walked into the front entrance of FLO2S I have to admit that I was quite confused. The set up was amazingly peaceful in the waiting area, but the dim lighting had my mind racing with so many questions (hello anxiety). After being greeted by the owners I knew I would be in for a fun treat! The melodic tunes were slowly enticing me for the experience that was to come.
So what is flotation therapy? I quickly learned that I would be in for a unique medical spa treatment. In short, you are experiencing a floating session held inside of a closed chamber. Float therapy allows you to experience complete relaxation while reducing stress and anxiety. An added plus – your body will naturally float due to the high concentration of salt in the float chambers. Huge relief for all of my non-swimmers out there. Float therapy is also beneficial in combating chronic pain and arthritis. You can imagine my anticipation to begin this treatment, as I was definitely beginning to experience body aches from weight gain during pregnancy. I was very intimidated by the idea of floating in the dark chamber, but FLO2S provided a safety light that could be used during the float session. They also provide showers, ear plugs, towels, soap, and shampoo. This is sure to make your first visit a breeze after reviewing all safety instructions.
The ultimate goal of floatation therapy is to take a break from external stimuli. If you are not in the habit of practicing meditation or taking mental breaks in general, your first experience may not be as relaxing as you expect. Just like meditation, the goal is to relax and focus on breath. Most importantly, keep trying because practice is the foundation of improvement. I chose to float without any swim attire, as I felt this would enhance my experience. Clothes can weigh down the body, so resorting to your birthday suit is 100 percent okay and encouraged! Once I was fully showered and clean, I settled into the water with my ear plugs and allowed the dim light to stay on for about 10 minutes. To my surprise, I began to settle into the water and magically float as if I had just tapped into unknown wellness powers. It felt damn good and I was ready to turn out the lights. That’s right – I sat in an enclosed chamber and floated for over an hour in complete darkness! The meditation sounds were the perfect company for this solo date and before I knew it my eyes began to flutter and I was drifting off to sleep. Now don’t get me wrong, it took some patience and deep breathing to settle into the water. For whatever reason the sound of my heartbeat just wouldn’t let my body rest. After the first half hour passed I was fully engaged and feeling so much lighter. It felt like the weight had been lifted off my spine and my body slowly began to float to each corner of the chamber. As scary as it sounds, it was without a doubt a unique experience that would do over and over again. The most memorable part was feeling my son wiggle around in my belly. Those little moments are what you need to warm your soul.
When your time is up, soft tunes will gently awake you from the inside chamber. When I got up I felt refreshed and calm. Any burden that I had been carrying felt released and my chronic pain had already subsided. As someone who suffers from anxiety, it can be incredibly hard for me to relax my body at times, so having an opportunity to be intentional about doing just that was appreciated. After getting out of the chamber and drying off, I made my way over to the tea lounge to enjoy a hot cup of chamomile blend. I looked over at my husband and smiled. He knew just what his soon to be mama bear needed. Peace, stillness, and a moment to just unwind.