that there are no problems in the present—
only choices, decisions, possibilities—
could I just slow down, breathe,
recognize where I am,
and simply do what needs to be done?
You know what?
I think I’ll try that for a day.
just doing what needs to be done
right in the moment
it needs to be done.
Do you know what that sounds likes to me?
It sounds like sanity.
I kept admonishing myself
for losing it with my kids.
Feeling guilty, ashamed,
a failure as a parent.
And then I realized,
it’s normal to lose it.
Because I’m human,
because sometimes I’m tired,
it just happens.
And as I began to cultivate acceptance
for my own humanness,
it occurred to me
that the goal isn’t
to never lose it with my kids.
The goal is to gradually learn
how to recognize my own insanity
as it arises
and restore myself to sanity
as best I can.
The goal is to acknowledge
the mistakes I have made
and do my best to make amends.
And so I ask for my kids’ forgiveness
when I lose it with them.
And as they forgive me
I start to see that I can forgive me too.
We went to an amusement park today.
What feels like play to many
seems to suck the soul out of me at times.
I tried to breathe as we waited in lines,
applying the tonglen meditation technique…
breathing in the impatience
for myself and all beings,
breathing out relaxed presence.
Sometimes I was successful,
I’m pretty sure at others I wore a faint scowl
unconsciously…as I dreamed of silence.
It’s a head game being around so many;
The noise and the commotion
remind me of how much I love quiet,
how important solitude is to my wellbeing.
Looking back on the day I see
another opportunity for balance,
dancing that fine line between being with self
and being with others,
giving enough time to each
to keep sanity and connection both within reach.