First thing’s first. If you haven’t listened to Creed’s hit single since 1999, sit back and have yourself a listen. Cue your best Creed impression.
This week, I’ve made an attempt to piece together little fragments of self-realization that I want to carry through this quarantine. I’ve journaled. I’ve yoga-ed. I’ve Zoomed. I’ve stared at the TV. I’ve stared at the wall. I’ve watched my hair grow longer and my pants get tighter. I even took a meditation course called “Self Care Healing Spaces for Grief and Loss.” And now…
I am f***ing enlightened exhausted.
The other day, upon recognizing how drained I felt, I spent some time searching for reasons for my exhaustion. There was a big, full, supermoon- maybe that was messing with me! Or maybe I’ve been stressed about work. Maybe I’ve been doing too much. Maybe there’s a pandemic. Maybe my mom just died.
In class last week, I shared this Mark Nepo quote: “I am longer searching, just opening.” I’ve begun to notice that the constant analyzing, searching and reasoning takes up tons of energy. And in a time of so much uncertainty, I wonder if it might serve us the most to take a beat, open up, and rest in awareness*. The truth of it is, we don’t know if we’re in a marathon or a sprint. If we drain our internal resources trying to wrap our heads around the Who’s, What’s, When’s, Where’s, and Why’s, we could come out of this with nothing left.
There’s a second part to the opening, and this is where it gets good. By opening, we are able to let go of our grasp, and in doing so, we can gain a little more perspective. On my walk this morning, I felt the fatigue set in, and I gave the whole “opening” thing a try. Instead of wracking my brain for information (Really though, is it the moon?), I relaxed my shoulders, unclenched my jaw and allowed it to simply be there. I kept walking, and then I started to realize that somewhere in the space surrounding me and the exhaustion, there was also peace, calm, and deep, deep gratitude.
Here’s my offering to you this week: Can you give the search party a rest? There’s something each of us is searching for in any given moment, whether it’s news as to when this will all be over, answers from your boss about what the future holds, or clarity from your innermost Self. When we turn away from the search, stand our ground, and nudge the heart open a bit, what we find might just give us more than clarity. It might give us hope.
So, with that, a gentle reminder that you are doing great. Keep going- this time, with arms wide open.
*”Rest in awareness” taken from Tara Brach’s “The Four Rememberances.”