My heart is breaking. My Dad’s health is declining. He’s so easy to love. He’s such a wonderful human – so loving, smart, balanced and supportive. I’m going to miss him terribly. But right now, he’s still here, and so am I. Trying to stay right here, right now is part of my practice; it’s tough yet rewarding, as we are still able to enjoy television programs and chatting about the past.
This morning, I was practicing self-care by taking a walk along the shore in La Jolla, California. My sister was hanging out with my Dad, so I was free to take a walk. I put in my ear buds and pushed play on unit 2 of David Treleaven’s Trauma Sensitive Mindfulness Course. The course is on unit 5, and I’m only on unit 2. After letting myself off the hook, I had a surge of gratitude for the ability to take classes online, where the course is forever in your library and you can pace yourself as your life allows.
During the session, David led a short meditation.
Following his instructions, I stood still on the sand and closed my eyes. I noticed that my body felt like dropping down to the earth like a stone. I absolutely could have collapsed right there, joining the sandpiper birds, searching for morsels at the surf’s edge.
David then instructed us to open our eyes and notice what happened. I felt a subtle upsurge of energy, and my intellect labeled the emotion as happiness. Wow! I was happy to be on the beach, and happy to have found some energy to buoy the weight of my heavy body.
I’m not dealing with trauma, but I am stressed (who wouldn’t be) and this technique worked so quickly and easily that I couldn’t believe it! It is nuanced, as so much mind/body work is, plus I needed to have a quiet mind to notice what was arising.
How was I able to quiet my mind?
I can quiet my mind because of consistent mindfulness and meditation practice. With repetition, being able to focus my attention on the soles of my feet, or my breath, or a word or phrase becomes second nature. I’ve always said, “You have to practice with these tools when you don’t need them, so you will have them when you do!”
Today, I gave myself hug and a pat on the back for doing the work all these years so I could find my calm in the chaos.
May you be safe, happy, healthy and live with ease. May your practice enable you to find calm in the chaos.