I started a yoga and meditation practice about eight months ago.
It was a last ditch effort.
Diagnosed with Depression and General Anxiety Disorder, I had finally hit a breaking point. Wrecked with constant, toxic worry, first I could barely sleep, and then I couldn’t stop sleeping. I lost my appetite, my drive, and my creativity – all of which pushed me deeper into a panic that soon, I would lose my family.
I remember confessing (over and over) to my husband that it was only a matter of time before he left. How could he or anyone else possibly stand for this – for my – crazy?
One morning, as I was literally convulsing with the anxiety over having to go to work and know how to do things, I asked Ken, point-blank how much more of this could he stand.
He was concerned and frustrated, but never wavered.
“You know that scene in the Departed, where Matt Damon talks about being Irish and able to be miserable forever?”
“Yeah,” I managed.
“If this is the best it ever gets, I’m still not going anywhere. Get what I’m saying?”
I nodded and understood, but at the time still couldn’t process how I could possibly be worth that much.
Very soon after that I took out a yoga DVD from the library. I was fortunate enough to be married to a man who loved me through the worst – so, I decided to try my best.
I would take my medicine. I would go to therapy. I would write my pages, and I would explore yoga and meditation.
What I like most about yoga and meditation is that it releases me from having to do it “right” – or even well. They are practices. Constant practices. There is no room for perfection and competition (which took some time to really be okay with).
My practices vary. I go through spurts when I make it to my mat for at least an hour a day, every day. There are spurts when my mat stays wrapped up in the corner. There are spurts when I connect with my breath and sink deep into peace and relaxation. And there are spurts when I come to meditate only to find my grocery list racing around my mind.
Regardless, these are practices I continually come back to.
And yesterday, during a sound therapy workshop, I knew something wonderful had happened when – just for about a second – I achieved non-thought. A glorious, divine moment beyond and outside of my lovely, churning mind.
Of course, as soon as I noticed it, the thinking resumed and the moment was gone…but here’s the real magic:
I appreciated the second.
My first thought wasn’t:
Gosh all these months, all these hours, and finally all I get is one lousy second.
Holy $#&*, I just got a second!
That’s progress, my friend. And it beats the pants off perfection.