A letter to me. - January 23, 2017
In the tube today, I made a mistake.
Instantly, I had to get out.
Once I was aware of the smallness, I needed to get out of it.
I was rolled out. I was granted a moment to breathe.
I closed my eyes and went back in.
I did not open my eyes.
Although I almost wanted to. Yet. only. almost.
I was in there for almost an hour.
An hour of alarming sounds. A voice speaking to me through headphones. Weighted plates on my chest and abdomen. And IV in my arm.
My eyes closed.
Breathing as instructed.
Attempting to catch my breath after a long hold.
In a small space.
Which I had to make the size it needed to be.
In. my. head.
Because it needed to be big.
Only in my head could I control my environment. And my breath. And my wellbeing.
I could not control it in the outer.
The outer was what it was.
Loud. Small. Scary. Helpless. Out of my control.
I went to so many places of helplessness in my past.
My daughter’s fear.
My son’s surgery.
My broken leg.
My heart attack.
My friend’s cancer.
My dad’s Parkinson’s.
My Mom’s heart.
My breast surgery.
My future surgery.
I attempted to breathe it out. To let it go.
Yet then I could not breathe at all. Had to hold. Non resistance, I said to myself. So I saw trees in my inner eyes. I heard birds where the high pitched sounds beeped. I felt the rumble of a rollercoaster when the alarming deep sounds and shakes of the machine startled me. And God... I trusted.
I trusted the person in my headset.
I forgot his name.
And the panic balloon in my left hand.
I wish I could transport away.
Beam me up Scotty.
Where is he when we need him?
I guess in my head. And my heart. I always loved that idea.
And I guess i did beam myself up. Into a different world, a place of more peace and calm. If it is true that one needs to root before one can go up higher into the sky, just as flowers do and those huge oak trees, that seem to have built a whole system of roots, then I went through a great rooting today. The darkness of the lower earthy planes of where I place my feet and where my memories are felt scary and threatening. All those memories of loss and pain, of hurt and fear. I was rooted deep, I hope. So I can go higher up and love and enjoy this world even more.
I have seen this with some old people. When they have gone through so much, much more than I could ever imagine. Those elder wisdom holders seem to have a greater sense of humor, an equanimity that seems undisturbed by ‘small’ human upset. Those elder have a sense of calm that is resilient against attacks of the common kind.
Especially those older people who have lived through a war. They seem to really know what life’s priorities are. Most of them say dance and sing, family and friends, good food and drink and simplicity.
I heard about a study of happiness and contentment. This 75 year long Harvard study showed that what makes people truly joyful, deeply content and happy is relationship.
Community with others.
Communion with the world in a way.
I guess once someone has lived through adversity, through death, through pain and suffering, what tends to be left in those people who have sorted it out, is pure joy.
I have also met some who were just simply bitter and distraught. They seemed to have lost hope of a better life, of a bluer sky and a more beautiful next day. They seem to linger in a place of constant pain and suffering as they seem to deny the actual way things are. And in that acceptance, life could be so much better.
Today, I was able to say: Yes, I do have cysts. Yes, I am here. Yes, I feel crappy. And yes, so it is. And then all I could do was hope. Hope for a better day. For bluer skies. For less pain. And more joy.
Maybe the pain today will teach me the joy in a pain free tomorrow.
Maybe the upset today will teach me of peace tomorrow.
Maybe the resentment of how ‘it is’ will teach me about the acceptance of what is tomorrow.
I hope so.