My posts have been spotty of late, and my critical mind wants to lament and wail about my lack of discipline. Then the practical adult in me recounts what I’ve been doing with my days and nights and counters the critic with Now just where do you think we’d find the time to write when we’re not even getting enough time to sleep? The critic then makes it a bad thing to change my routine, to have a different schedule. It’s addicted to feelings of shame, anxiety, and unworthiness. It’s saying I need to go back to the way things were. But things aren’t the way they were. Not even a little. Things have changed. I am glad about that. I am a part of all things, even though my ego would tell me I am separate. I have changed too. I am glad about that. I don’t need to feel guilty for changing, for adopting a different routine, for using my time in different ways. Therefore, I am glad to write when I can, and not a minute before. (Takes a deep breath and lies down on the floor, looks out the window at a puffy, white cloud floating in the blue sky, relaxes and sighs.)
Feeling a little lost, out of sorts these days. I couldn’t be bothered to write the last few nights… what has happened to me? I return a bit sheepishly, feeling guilty for dropping my routine; it’s been the one thing that has held me up through the transition into single motherhood. I remember the wisdom of my teachers. Begin where you are. Only this moment matters. You’re doing fine. You are enough, just as you are, right now. My mind loves to point out that although I can articulate my teachers’ wisdom, I’m not necessarily so great at embodying it. Oh well. That’s why we practice. We remember that we can keep trying, again and again and again.
I’ve been keeping this blog for years now, and this is my 6th consecutive year of NaPoWriMo. Hey, a pandemic can’t stop poetry, good news, right? Today’s prompt on the NaPoWriMo site recommended trying out a metaphor generator. I had some fun with it, but it didn’t inspire any poetry. So, I’ll just be doing my thang today…which is simply showing up and allowing what wants to be said to come forth…
As I grope for some kind of sane rhythm in the aftermath of our loss of normalcy I am comforted by what doesn’t change.
I still grow tired at night. I still eat, drink, use the bathroom. I still breathe.
I fell out of the loop for a moment, caught in a swirl of perfectionism. Suddenly I remembered that it’s not about being perfect, it’s about showing up authentically in the perfection of this moment… and so I came back.
Spirit: Time to get up and meditate. Mind: Nope. I wanna sleep in. Spirit: Time to get up and meditate. Mind (whining): But I wanna just be comfyyyyyyy. Spirit: Get up and meditate. Now. Body (silently) gets up, gets dressed, goes downstairs and meditates. Takeaway: Spirit always wins, thanks to discipline.
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.
When you decide to live in the mystery, nothing is predictable. One day goes smoothly, the next full of obstacles. When you decide to leave the safety of routine and give your life over to some greater purpose, only surrender and trust will do. It is a death of sorts… familiarity makes way for chaos, and this is a good thing. The moment your whole life falls apart, this is the beginning of your journey to realizing your fullest destiny. Take heart; there are others who have gone before you, you are not alone. Take a deep breath, walk to the edge and jump. You will grow wings and fly, you will be caught by some gigantic gentle hands, or you might be smashed to bits on the rocks below. Whatever happens, new life awaits… so don’t wait. Dive, dive into the mystery, and see what happens.
I learned a breathing technique last night,
and this morning,
I ditched my established meditation routine
and focused on this one thing.
It was kind of amazing
to try something new.
After more than 1.5 years doing the same thing,
it was a revelation
to just switch it up.
And then I wondered, In what other areas of my life have I gotten stuck in a routine, and where else do I need to
ditch the old
and just switch it up?
I come home
not sure what home is.
I leave strangers
who feel more like family
than my blood relatives.
We return to our daily lives
and I wonder
Will I remember
what I saw here?
The weight of my routine
will come crashing back down;
do I have the strength to stand
for the truth that held me
in the farthest reaches
of my mind, my universe?
help me remember.
I want my journey to mean something. I want to remember.
the most obvious things
are the hardest to see
because we’ve been staring at them so long
they become just another part of the scenery,
blending into obscurity.
it isn’t until
the routine is completely shaken up
that we see how we’ve been living,
what works and what doesn’t.
So it was with me
and the experience
of being caught in a snowstorm
the gift the snowstorm gave me:
being saved by some nearby friends
who gave me a place to stay,
getting more rest this past night
than I have gotten in
god only knows how long,
I had a realization: I need more rest in my life.
the obvious things
are sometimes the hardest to see.
And today it was so clear.
Today I had more energy
and my mood was more buoyant,
my mind was clearer
and everything was just so much more fun.
It’s amazing what one solid night of sleep can do.
And so I give thanks
for the routine I was living
where I wasn’t getting enough sleep,
and for the opportunity
to step out of that routine
and experience true rest
so that I could contrast
the two different experiences,
see what works and what doesn’t.
It is in simple little ways like this
that life teaches us all we need to know