“Best to take the moment present, as a present for the moment”
-Into The Woods
About 5 months ago I was confronted by news that brought a fundamental change to the way I understand myself and the world I inhabit. They say when one door closes… for me it felt like a door was kicked wide open and I stumbled through in a shocked stupor.
Since then I have been searching. I searched outside of myself, I searched for advice from others or just comforting words. I searched for closure and peace and found a lot of sadness, anger and grief. I was hard pressed to find anything that would pull me out of this intense sadness. Eventually it was so comforting to remain sad that I didn’t want to come out of its warm embrace. If I did, the things I was sad about might actually disappear and that I couldn’t bear.
I turns out, I can bear letting go of the sadness in favor of happiness and I can let in a little light to better navigate the darkness. I just had to search inside myself. I can’t say yet that I am grateful for the difficulty but I am grateful that I am coming through it. If not for radical shifts I would still be thinking and feeling on the same old plane. I like things better where I am now. I can appreciate the things and especially the people who mean so much more to me than what I am letting go of.
I wrote before about being disconnected from my own feelings. The best way I can describe it is to say that I have a little box in which any difficult emotion is locked up. I open it and feel a wave of emotion now and then but I mostly keep it locked and don’t process how I feel in the present. Going through a difficult time has allowed me to see this box for what it is and beginning this practice has helped me form new ways of noticing, feeling and being in the present.
I didn’t write anything this week while practicing mindfulness and emotions. I didn’t know what to say. Everyone feels differently. The blog posts this week were lovely and inspiring and I didn’t know what I could add to the discussion. My practice, while not to be discounted, wasn’t as focused on my emotions as I wanted it to be. I have such calm when I sit for my daily meditation. I don’t have a swirl of emotions at those times. I thought, for the first few days, that perhaps being disconnected was keeping me from the work in this week’s challenge, maybe it did a little. What the practice has given me throughout the week is a sense of awareness about my present feelings when I need it the most. I currently work on my own and most of my time is caught up in past and future worries and grief. I can go through a whole day without being aware of the present or dealing with any of the muck that comes up. It feels, often, as if I’ve opened my locked box and unleashed a tornado but instead of the thoughts swirling around me while I’m the calm center, I am also being tossed around without much control over what I’m thinking or feeling. This week I began to take notice when thoughts began swirling and emotions began to run away. I wasn’t sitting and consciously trying to meditate but the practice was informing my actions and a “working meditation” would arise. Baby steps, small wonders, new beginnings, I’m open and I’m willing to move forward one moment at a time.
Thank you for this week. Now let’s all give a little lovingkindness.