I’ve become more aware lately that when I take showers my mind runs rampant. What am I going to wear today? What’s the weather going to be like? What should I bring for lunch? Salad? Do we even have any lettuce? That means I need to MAKE the salad. There’s no time for that. I had salad last night, too. What’s for dinner tonight, then? Do I need to prep anything before I leave for work? Why do I have to go to work? I am so not awake yet. I realize this is probably quite common, but when I catch myself doing this and am able to stop to take a few breaths, I realize that shower time is so much more…enjoyable. Yes, an everyday task as mundane as showering was actually enjoyable.
You may have noticed in my last post that I’ve taken a liking to the Drinking Tea Meditation, hence my variations on a theme: Drinking Juice Meditation and Eating Borscht Meditation. Consequently, this leads to this morning’s variation: Taking A Shower Meditation. Could I really tune-in to the present moment enough to maintain that enjoyable sensation throughout my shower time? Sharon suggests doing these meditations with everyday activities, and really, what could be more everyday than this?
Normally my showers last about ten minutes, but to accommodate my slower pace and hope for brilliant lightening bolts of revelation, this one rang in at around twenty-five. I felt the temperature of the water on my back; I felt my fingers massaging in shampoo into my hair; I felt myself working the soapy foam through the loofa (yes, I use a loofa); I inhaled the dense steam. The problem was, I was SO.BORED. My body got tired of the water pummeling it; my hands got tired of feeling the lather of the soap, to the point where they felt numb. WHY WAS THIS NOT MORE ENJOYABLE?
There were a couple of moments where I was able to tap into that enjoyable factor, where I could really feel myself in the space and in the moment, and a lightness came over me and allowed me really to open up into what I was feeling. But there was nothing new. Nothing felt extraordinary. Nothing felt particularly different from how it feels every single other morning, even while I contemplate the merits of wearing a black cardigan with brown shoes.
It’s taking quite a bit of restraint on my part not to simply say, “So much for that idea,” completely abandon it, never to return. Yes, I know we win some and lose some in meditation, that that’s not the point, and that that doesn’t necessarily mean we didn’t do the work (a particularly poignant point, I felt, from Sunday night’s gathering at Brooklyn Yoga School). BUT IT WAS SUCH A BRILLIANT CONCEPT. Just maybe not for today, maybe not for that particular moment.