The insights keep coming
I loved writing this article about morning magic two weeks ago, sharing with you how much I get out of my daily routines — journaling, meditation, tai chi, and more. And then my relationship to my routine changed. (Funny how things work sometimes.)
Relaxing into innate resilience and wellbeing
I’ve been learning about the three principles (mind, consciousness, and thought) over the last year or so, and I keep hearing and thinking about how these principles uncover our innate or natural resilience, wellbeing, and humanity.
After writing that article, I — without really planning to change anything at all — found myself relaxing the tight grip on my routine. One day in a group call I mused about what it might look like if I didn’t set aside all that time each day to check off these activities. My teacher said “Imagine what you might do with all that time!”
Insights, and surprises.
I worried. What will I do with the time? Watch more tv and eat chocolate? Can I trust myself to do what’s good and useful if I don’t have a rigid checklist? Here’s what I found: At one point in the day I felt like stretching so I stretched. At another point I grabbed my shoes and did a little tai chi practice. And then at night, before bed (after watching some TV), I found myself chanting for a few minutes, and then I reached for my journal and pen on the way to bed, where I wrote a few pages. (I had never journaled at night before sleep before.)
Morning magic looks different now than it did just two weeks ago when I wrote about it. It’s exciting to see what I’ll be called to do next, now that I’m trusting the process — and my instincts — a bit. Today I’m starting by waking up before six, grabbing my laptop, and writing to you from bed. Over the weekend I took a nap then successfully hand-sewed a deeper back pocket in my new pants so my phone will fit in it (really, Gap? A 1.5″ deep pocket? Seriously?) It feels really good to ask myself what I feel like doing in the spaces that are opening up because I’m not so tightly and rigidly scheduling my time. I can have magic any time of the day or night, it seems!
One more insight: I find that when I allow the desire to arise in me naturally (instead of just checking off a to-do), I bring more of my full self to the thing, more intention. I feel more of the sacred energy of ritual when the action comes from desire instead of obligation.
Giving my daughter part of her legacy while I’m alive to see her get it
One more story to be told about the packing, downsizing, and releasing journey that unfolded in this last move:
I had so many pre-digital photographs. A few moves ago I had gone through the tons of boxes of snapshots. I culled and sorted. Kept the good ones (no negatives, just prints). Bought beautiful archival boxes and had them displayed that way for years. When I decided my archive was too big to take with me, I knew what to do.
Take every opportunity you can to pass on legacy while you’re here to enjoy the experience — there’s nothing like it. Nice way to open into Mother’s Day week.
Rose (my daughter) came to help me pack, and I told her the photos had to go. I asked her to go through the boxes and take the pix that were meaningful to her. I watched her spend a couple of hours going through each box. She took pictures of herself as an infant and little kid, and she also took many pictures of me and my family — a few generations worth. She filled a big bin with images and also took a bunch of the beautiful boxes as well. Poignant, significant, (tearfully) joyful.
Retraining my brain
Sleeping on a noisy street with the window open
I climbed into bed the first night here in Petaluma with the windows cracked for fresh air (that’s how I like to sleep, yo). I was awakened over and over and over all night long by the sound of cars accelerating right outside my window. (Turns out there’s a stop sign a few houses up, and a small rise — acceleration happens.)
I tried sleeping with the windows shut; not a sustainable choice for me. I like fresh air!
Natural resilience may have been at work here too: I started thinking about white noise, and did a little research. After a bit of trial and error — water sounds made me have to pee every time I was awakened — I found an app that had a bunch of level sliders; I was able to come up with a noise that was similar in timbre and intensity to the sounds of the cars going by.
It only took a week to retrain my brain: After a week of sleeping with that recorded sound going all night, I now need nothing. My brain is soothed. I can sleep with the windows wide open all night long and am no longer being rudely awakened by cars going by. A happy surprise.
What insights are arising for you? Where can you loosen and lighten up? What might come up for you when you do?