Something has changed.
I don’t feel so stuck.
I’ve chosen to stop listening to the old programming,
and replace it with something better.
I have to be vigilant.
If I don’t watch it,
the same old stuff will come cropping up,
fill my consiousness, and make me miserable:
You’re not good enough.
Your life is a mess.
You’ll never be happy.
You’re a failure.
When I start to hear that stuff
(it usually begins the moment I wake up)
I listen to my affirmations app,
or The Quote of the Day Show Podcast,
or I repeat this new mantra out loud:
I am immune to the opinions of others,
positive and negative.
I am neither greater nor lesser than anyone else.
I am fearless in the face of challenges.
Yes, I am choosing to rigorously reprogram my mind.
Little by little, day by day,
I’m starting to feel okay about myself and my life.
Even if there are some unknowns about my future.
Even if there are some unresolved questions in my heart.
Even if I sometimes mess up…
I choose to live my life as an adventure,
a life that no one has ever lived before.
This is my life.
I choose to live it on my terms.
The tide has shifted
and I’m ready for change.
Somehow more empowered…
maybe my practices have coalesced?
Or is it the clarity arising
from 100% sobriety
100% of the time?
Is it that the Universe has aligned?
Is it that enough people have prayed for me?
I’ve begun to feel
that life is worth living again…
Is it the blessing of a thunderstorm,
cooling the air
after the sweltering heat of day,*
the look in my children’s eyes
as we pick wineberries
by the side of the road,
the hustle back home
as the storm approached?
Something is different.
There is more hope,
more conviction that somewhere,
this will all work out.
*My home’s air-conditioning system has be inoperable since May. If you are from around here, you know how godawfully hot and humid it is in these parts this time of year. If you’re not from around here, trust me when I say that it’s basically inhumane and cruel to not have air conditioning during the summer months…
I was preparing myself
to be alone and miserable on the 4th.
No one had invited me to anything.
I was ready to feel angry at my ex
for leaving me and
taking all our friends with him,
angry because my kids are with him this year,
leaving me all alone.
But then I had a conversation with myself…
How do I want to feel?
I want to feel happy, connected.
Who could help me feel that way?
People who are earthy, who love nature,
who celebrate with music and healthy food.
Who do I know like this?
And then suddenly I remembered a friend
from kirtan and drum circles,
a friend with whom I sat in ceremony.
I felt vulnerable and pretty pathetic
having to ask, but I asked…
I asked if he was doing anything for the 4th,
and would it be okay for another person to tag along.
No pressure, I said, just thought I’d ask.
And he answered that he’s going to a gathering
at a friend’s house…a potluck, with a cacao ceremony
and kirtan…and he invited me to join the goodness!
I have plans for the 4th.
It’s a miracle!
I’m still working on simply accepting this moment.
It may be a life long practice,
because as I really pay attention to it,
I notice that there is very little about this moment
that is like anything I’ve ever experienced before.
In fact, this moment is completely different
from anything I’ve ever lived…
and I realize that my mind that wants familiarity
was just painting a picture of the routine
over what I was living in reality,
and calling forth routine perceptions and behaviors
in response to the picture my mind has painted.
Every second that ticks by is a miracle.
Am I available to experience it?
This moment is a huge gift.
My children are changing, I am changing,
the weather is changing,
our circumstances are changing,
everything is constantly in flux.
Maybe I remove the blindfold
and see that beyond the routine
there is a fieild of infinite possibility.
May I awaken to my true nature there.
I spoke with a man today
who specializes in the psychology
of humans being evicted from their homes.
He gave me some sound advice:
This is a low point;
you can only go up from here.
Money is no big deal;
you can always make more of it.
As long as you and your children are healthy,
everything is going to be just fine.
Don’t focus on two years from now,
just deal with whatever problems arise today.
You’ll get through this
and someday this will just be a memory.
It’s awful, but it’s temporary.
He shared that he had lost his house
during the recession over ten years ago.
It helped to know
that he was coming from experience
instead of blind sympathy.
My task now is training my brain to know
that I am safe in this moment,
and conditioning my nervous system
to respond with relaxation
in the face of challenge—
or at least to have a positive mindset
about the challenges.
It feels like a superhuman feat
to trust, to have faith, to breathe,
to choose my mindset…
But the alternative is despair.
I’ll go with Option A.
Well…I got a lot done today,
and that feels good.
I definitely did not have the luxury
of lying in a ball of anxiety.
(Thank goodness for my yoga teaching gig;
it made me clean myself up and leave my house).
Off to my next class in a moment,
and my body is so tired,
yet I know I will do just fine.
Dinner is ready for the kids,
the sitter is on her way,
the kitchen is tidy,
and I’m about to teach again.
It’s amazing how good one feels
when one is doing
what one was born to do.*
*Now if only I could make enough money teaching yoga to support myself and my kids…but I’m starting to figure out ways to open up other streams of income, and all of it together, fingers crossed, will work out just fine. As soon as I figure out how not to be homeless, that is…
Not sure how or why,
but something shifted,
and today I feel better.
Was it grace? Luck?
of the stars in the sky?
I went to be early
but was awakened at 1 am
by my neighbors’
loud conversation outside.
I’ve learned not to fight
but to do something
productive with my time.
I got up, sat for an hour,
and ideas began to arrive.
I went back to sleep
and awoke groggy,
something was different.
It’s as if a giant reset button
had been pressed…
And today my mind is my friend.