I had this idea that the more I understood, the easier my life would be. I had this thought that the more experience I had in a relationship, the easier it would get. I had this notion that the more I evolved in my spiritual journey, the easier it would be to walk my path. I hoped that there would be fewer times when I hurt, that there would be fewer challenges in front of me and that my life would somehow look very different than it had. I had imaged that the storms would cease to exist.
I am coming to realize that my life, in so many ways, continues to look the same, but how I feel is what is so very different. I still get sick… and why wouldn’t I, as my body is still human. Problems still come up and why wouldn’t they, it is the challenges that help me grow. There are still moments of disagreement and why wouldn’t there be, relationships are the coming together of different views and opinions. I still feel sad at times, why wouldn’t I, as my feelings are my guide to where I am in a relationship to where I want to be.
The other day I realized that in the past when I experienced my emotions I would typically hold my breath. For the most part I think this was an unconscious act. Yesterday I read this article that talked about the fact that holding one’s breath is a way of ignoring and suppressing ones’ feelings. For months now I have practiced deep breathing. I have worked hard to create the habit of taking a deep breath when a situation occurs that I am not in favour of. It has been interesting for me to experience spontanious tears as a result of the practice of mindful breathing. I have been surprised at times by the overwhelming rush of emotions I get as I feel deeply into my breath. I am learning to observe the emotions as they move through me in the different experiences I have throughout my days. I laugh more than I ever have. I cry more than I ever have. I find myself smiling for no apparent reason other than my deep appreciation of the moment. I feel the loss, hurt, sadness and grief as it comes up. And I feel it leave my body as I exhale. I am coming to recognize the sensation of fear in me, noticing when it is still very small, just a hint, not yet fully realized. I feel its sensation turn to love as I recognize the contrast of my forward focus and see the beauty around me in ways that I was once blind too.
I am coming to realize what ever comes my way I can and will handle. I am learning to not take things so personally, while at the same time taking responsibility for what is mine to own. I am creating habits that are changing my life one small step at a time each and every day. And when I experience the ‘yuck’ I appreciate the understanding of the contrast it creates for me. I breathe, deep, life-nourishing breaths and I feel. On the surface very little has changed in my life, but I am not the same person I was yesterday.
© Kathy Bazinet 2014