Monday, January 24, 2011
7 days of Solitude
Hi! It's been a while. Sorry for the delay... I don't have a good excuse, except that I got busy. You deserve better, though :)
OK, so this post is about some pretty important stuff that's come up this past week. I was on doctor-ordered voice rest due to a bump of some form on my left vocal fold. A case of overworking myself physically, emotionally, and mentally, and not listening to the signs until it was too late.
So I had to release myself from all commitments... and spend 7 days with myself. Seven days. With myself. Most of the time in a confined space.
Now, I will say one thing: this was certainly not a true vipassana meditation because I definitely did a lot of things, and had to communicate with others through other methods (email, texts, etc). Because the voice rest came on quite suddenly, I still had a great deal of my life to organize and as much as I wanted to take the time to have Mind become completely silent (oh horrors!) I was unable to, due to not being completely ready for it.
HOWEVER. That being said, it has definitely been a huge and wonderful learning experience this past week.
You know, up until recently, I'd really started to lose sight of myself. Isn't it funny sometimes, the more action you take, the more you can lose sight of yourself? I'm taking action because I want to get where I want to be... yet, I took this action so far that I got sick and had to remove myself completely.
Of course... doesn't the Universe always give you what you asked for, just in a different way?
I've been looking to start taking time off my current life for a while... I just didn't know how. Part of me was starting to get frustrated and a little dead inside, much like that hamster on the wheel (a past life, perhaps??), the merry-go-round that doesn't let you get off. I saw a psychic the Friday before I found out all this stuff with my voice, on a very odd whim. (Seriously, I was walking to the car on Granville Island and something nudged me further on, further on, and further on still... until I was at the bottom of the psychic's staircase looking up. What's a girl to do!)
So he said some pretty powerful stuff concerning my upcoming direction. The two things he made note of were:
-to make time for my spiritual work
-focus on writing
(actually, what he said was, "You're a healer, girl! Share those gifts with the world!" a la Jack McFarland)
He also told me that a lot of my struggles were behind me, and now it's time to reap the benefits. (What does that even MEAN? I thought in my head)
So how does that relate to you? Well. I must share with you some of the pretty awesome revelations I've had over the past week.
- Creativity is awesome. I've had time to revisit certain passages/exercises of the Artist's Way (Julia Cameron... if you haven't read it... do it now!), specifically the morning pages (3 pages of longhand writing done first thing in the morning) and the artist date (1-2 hours of hanging out with your Inner Child). The point of morning pages to get your "chatter" out of the way so you can spend the day living in the present. Some people love it, some people hate it... but all I have to say is when I'm focused on "doing whatever it takes" to regain my creativity, 3 pages of longhand writing seem like a great way to get my own voice out of the way without other people having to listen to it! And the point of the artist date is to "fill the well" and remember what your little artist likes and doesn't (because ultimately, isn't it your perception that makes your own creativity unique?)
I've had a pretty great time remembering what it's like to write short stories just for the fun of it, or sketch pretty awful semblances of cups (or are they dogs? You can never tell when I'm done with it...) I have no idea where my writing will take me... but remembering the journey has been pretty incredible.
- Cleanliness is next to Godliness. You know, I totalled it up today, and I spent somewhere around 20 hours in the past week cleaning and organizing my place. You'd think I hadn't cleaned it since we moved in! But I read recently in Stuart Wilde's work that touching things will give them a life energy, regardless of what they are... and ya know, I haven't put this much love into a place... well... ever. For the first time since we've moved in (and even before then...) I am in love with the space I live in... simply because I'm finding my groove!
- Self-care is what it's cracked up to be. Oh my god. I'd forgotten what it was like to sleep until you wake up. Honestly. Since ... the summer... maybe? ... I hadn't had a day where I hadn't woken up to an alarm... and I certainly hadn't had more than 1 day in a row of having nothing planned except for what I've planned for myself. Meaning, being in control of my schedule gave me a feeling of empowerment that had been missing for a very long time... and the ability to sleep for the length of time my body asked for, to do little bits of stretching here and there... but mostly, to say nice things to yourself. For the first time in years, I've had the time to do an awesome, full meditation process in the morning.
And if you don't mind, I'm going to share with you a meditation technique that 2 wonderful people in my life, Julie and Matt, shared with me on the weekend. It goes like this:
1) put your hands on your heart
2) close your eyes
3) say/sing/whisper/chant/warble "I love you" to yourself for at least 1 minute.
I know, I know! It sounds cheesy! But I promise you--I promise you -- it works!
- Refresh, Re-inspire, Rinse, Repeat. I'd forgotten what it's like to observe my thoughts. Granted, (thankfully!), all the work I've been doing for the past 5 years is starting to take hold so I don't have to consciously think so much about creating my thoughts... but GEE WHIZ! Taking so much time hanging out with myself, I forgot how angry I can get when that douche cuts me off, or how selfish I can be when I'm eating, or how fear-prone I can get when I'm reviewing my finances. As much as I like to pretend I'm perfect... I forgot just how far from it I am! And, how much work it takes to change those deep-set thoughts...!
As always, I hope that my learnings can be of some use to you. The next upcoming weeks are going to be ones of sincere reflection, and as I intend to be a diligent client and listen to my "Just Jack" psychic, I will be focusing on how I can be of service in both writing and offerings of spiritual healing. So in other words, expect more blogs!
Love, blessings, and infinite gratitude,