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Naming Things

Updated: Sep 27, 2020

This is a day of allowing.

I’m through the challenging weekend

Through the dreaming night

And into the Monday morning

This is a day of to do’s

Time schedules and projects

Clock ticking and sun moving

List checking and breathing

I can feel the fingers of expectation

Pressing on my shoulders

I can hear the lists of to do’s

Being read out loud slowly

I don my mask and don’t look up

Slowly breathing my presence into my feet

I am safe. I am happy

I am filled with unlimited value

I know this dance; I’ve been here before.

I will get everything done and all will be well

And yet my anxiety is pulling me forward

Yelling not to forget and must have now.

If I could shut off the sounds in my mind

Maybe the tension would lift in my body

And the more I try the louder it is,

So I breathe. I have all the time I need.

Standing at the cusp of change is hard.

The day before me not yet fulfilled

I adjust to the newness in hindsight

With time, with time.

I have always had anticipation anxiety

It comes with the territory of feeling unsafe

My hands are wringing and my brow furrowed

Even when goodness is around the corner.

The ghosts of my past can’t touch me now

I am safe. I am happy.

I am surrounded by a loving community

I am peace.

The timetable is mine. The schedule I listed.

There is no enemy in the mist.

It’s just a Monday with the week ahead

Full of good, light, love and just being me.

There is no controlling life. Try corralling a lightning bolt, containing a tornado. Dam a stream and it will create a new channel. Resist, and the tide will sweep you off your feet. Allow, and grace will carry you to higher ground. The only safety lies in letting it all in – the wild and the weak; fear, fantasies, failures and success. When loss rips off the doors of the heart, or sadness veils your vision with despair, practice becomes simply bearing the truth. In the choice to let go of your known way of being, the whole world is revealed to your new eyes

Participants’ Reflections:

  • Your power of suggestion is amazing. I got off on what you didn’t want us to get onto, which was the craziness of the day. I spent my whole 15 minutes thinking about how busy I am between now and Thursday when we leave. It was the busiest meditation I had in a long time, and I guess that is what I needed.

  • I’m sitting here thinking about what projects can I take on between now and the election. How do I prioritize all my goals and plans?

  • I got this little tidbit of anxiety, on the edge, that anticipatory anxiety that we all get. What I chose to meditate on was ‘you are not alone’. It’s almost like the voice of the divine reminding me I am not alone. I was not alone in the grocery store, not my idea of fun. But I can name four people that were there that were just lovely. We shared a while ago, there’s a type of tree that joins by the roots. The trees are all individuals on top of the ground, but underneath, they are all interconnected. I need to remember that. Meditation never looks the same on any given day and that’s okay.

  • I missed the morning pre-meditation inspirational reading. And in my meditation today, I kept going to my solar plexus feeling centered. And then when everyone started talking this morning, I thought maybe it was a blessing I missed the reading (laugh).

  • I always appreciate that you name things. The anticipatory anxiety really stuck with me. For those of us who don’t feel safe. I spend a lot of the mornings with my binoculars watching the birds and the trees. Today, I saw birds I never saw before. And three geese land on the pond. And I know I am feeling anticipatory anxiety about the fall. Being outside and being with people has been such a gift. But what will I do in the fall to productively fill my days in order to connect. I’ve been thinking about that for about a week and it crystalized today. Being at home has been wonderful, it hasn’t been painful. But there’s a part of me that wonders how I will do it. Another bird just flew by. There’s something going on. I know the full moon is coming. Thank you for the naming.

  • I really appreciated the line ‘as we allow, grace can enter.’ It reminded me of the poem “Ode to the Mystery of Life” (see August 25 blog). And when we create enough space, we have the grace which then joins us so we aren’t alone and new creation can occur. I really felt it today after many weeks of a lot of unknowns.

  • The mask feels familiar, that anxiety of going out in public and am I safe enough. I’m glad you said all you did. You are just as human as all of us. It doesn’t have to be perfect every time you talk. Your wisdom, voice, kindness is enough. On NPR, I heard that there was a study done on trees and it showed how the trees are all connected. The dying trees sent their nutrients to other trees. Everything in the forest is connected above and beneath, everyone communicates with each other. We are all connected.

  • There is a film Intelligent Trees that shows all that.

  • Thank you, you are always spot on. The fingers, the pressure on the shoulders, the expectations. I loved how you followed that with affirmations. And how you said ‘I’ve been through this before.’ And that always comforts that place in me that doesn’t feel safe. I’ve always got to figure out what I have to do, where I have to go. I’ve been here before and it works out in the affirmations which you said, helps me bring it around. And as was just said, you have all the same feelings like the rest of us. I’m not unique which is a good feeling. I tend to feel terminally unique and I’m not.

  • That can go both ways. I can feel unique and special and puffed up. And then I can also feel unique and alone and I’m the only one who feels like this.

  • All this anticipatory anxiety has given all of us some good laughs this morning. And when some reading gives us a chance to smile this early in the morning, that’s a good thing.

  • Something I teach in the Feel Fear and Do It Anyway classes is that under any emotion, if we just keep going down, it’s my fear that I can’t handle it. That whatever I’m doing, I can’t handle it. And as you are all talking, I’m getting emotional, and under my tears, is the fear I can’t handle it.

  • We can handle it. It too shall pass. And we have a loving community we can connect into.

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