Updated: Oct 11, 2018
Today’s Oprah/Deepak meditation theme is “Trusting Your Decisions,” but in my current state, this lesson is lost on me. I’m exhausted. I lie down, close my eyes, and let the meditation take me away.
In my mind’s eye I’m walking out the back door, but don’t even make it to the lawn before I collapse into sobs on the deck. Jesus walks up from the lawn and wraps an arm around me. We sit together on the steps.
He says that he knew this day was coming. I am bearing a lot of weight on my shoulders.
JC: “Ohhh. Yes. Tell me what’s going on.”
Sally: “I’m not even sure. I just feel overwhelmed. I feel like a raw nerve. Today, especially, I notice all the harsh elements of life.”
JC: “Wow. That’s well said. You should write that.”
My head is down. Jesus pauses and looks at the water.
JC: I want you to look at the waves.”
Through my tears, I look up. I did notice the waves when I first woke up: lots of white caps, heavy waves crashing against the shore. No freighters or large boats in the strait but lots of wind.
JC: “You are going to have days like this. It’s going to be hard sometimes.”
Hearing that gives me permission to let go and cry harder.
JC: “How is your body feeling?”
I check into my body and it feels a little numb. Not connected. No voices surface. Everything’s “gone under.”
Sally: “I don’t feel safe. Even with you here.”
Julie, the deer walks up to me.
JC: “We anticipated this and that’s one of the reasons Julie came. Go ahead and pet her.”
I reach out to pet the deer on the neck. Her fur feels a little soothing.
JC: “You should research how tears work; what they do for you. [pause] I think you should write about today. The days you need to be gentle with yourself. What should you do today? Should you cancel any appointments? How can you be gentle with yourself?”
I try to think about what I have going on today but I am too confused and upset to think clearly. I don’t want to look up. I just want to stay hete. Be held. Cry.
When the meditation ends, I consider what I’ve done in the past, how I’ve coped when life has felt like too much. The first thing that pops into my head is an old cardinal rule: STICK TO ROUTINE.
I boil some water for tea and take some supplements. Routine is a calming elixir. I pledge to talk to my work partner to process what was happening. I decide that a short walk would feel good.
Being super sensitive is a super power. You are able to sense more and be more available to the energy of the world. But when things feel excessive and harsh it’s important to go inward. Which brings up my second cardinal rule: RAISE YOUR BOUNDARIES.
On days like today, I make it a rule to avoid news coverage. Looking at the media can feel like an assault on the best of days. I avoid places and people that might trigger me emotionally. In days past when I had more traditional employment, I would bury myself in my work, which was a way of numbing out. I thought I was practicing mindfulness, but in essence it was really bypassing.
Now I’m listening to the waves. They have calmed. Being human can be hard. There is no shame is taking time out to appreciate that fact and take heart in just being present to whatever is surfacing.
What I Learned:
Exhaustion is a message I need to heed. It’s an indicator that reminds me that I’ve lost self-awareness and abandoned self-care.
I need to trust that I need and deserve self-care. I’m worthy of the re-set.
Are there reoccurring feelings or behaviors in your life that may indicate a pattern waiting for recognition?
How can cultivate self-awareness and observe these patterns with self-compassion?
Can you adopt a practice of self-care and make that a discipline in your life?