This Rolling Process
Yesterday, I went jogging. This may not seem like a big deal to you, but to me it was huge. For the past 2.5 years, I’ve been dealing with varying amounts of fatigue and other symptoms due to chronic illness.
I used to be a regular exerciser. At times I exercised every day. I would jog, hike, do yoga, hula hoop, take Zumba classes; I had the privilege of basically being able to do whatever I wanted in terms of physical exercise and recreation. I took it for granted….never again!
For the past couple of weeks, I have been able to feel that my body wants to exercise, which is quite different from occasionally forcing myself to do something even though I don’t really have the energy. There’s been a restlessness in me, almost like nervous energy. (Gee, I can’t imagine why I’d have that right now.)
I put on a guided jog/walk mediation from my Headspace app., and got on my way. The fact that it was raining made no difference to me. And I was present. So present. I could feel the cold droplets of rain on my face, I could see the budded branches with drops of water all lined up, hanging from them. I could feel the deep breaths coming into my lungs and going out. I could feel my feet hitting the dirt path- heel, toe, heel toe. I was blissful, honestly. I had energy! When I got home, I did sit-ups, and I still wasn’t tired.
Of note is that off and on for the past week I’ve been feeling down, blah, almost stuck. Tired of this new life already. I had a bunch of feelings that needed to come out. I realize now that I had a hilarious belief that because I work with feelings for a living, I’d be able to hand this pandemic thing no problem. Ha!
What I remembered is that, of course, no one is outside the influence of this thing. In an unprecedented way, at least in our lifetimes, we have all moved into an unknown zone. We didn’t know this virus was coming, we couldn’t have predicted the influence it would have on our lives, and to one extent or another, we’ve all been traumatized by it. I had a big release of sadness a few days ago, which seemed to come out of the blue. And underneath that was fear. It’s personal. It’s universal. It’s in my body. It’s in the ethers.
Turns out, I had been walking around in some kind of half-conscious state of denial, celebrating my slowed down life and the ability to work on projects I hadn’t had time for, or at least convinced myself I hadn’t had time for. That was the “honeymoon phase” of being in this new reality.
After my big emotional release, I teeter-tottered between feeling happy again and feeling blue. I finally slowed down enough today to listen to my body, to my soul. It was saying: move. This energy needs to circulate around and move so that it doesn’t become stagnant. Yesterday (and now today), it was as if I could be fully present again and experience that natural bliss, all because I had listened.
I’m not saying I’ve discovered some magic cure for emotionally surviving the pandemic. This takes some energy and attention, to recognize feelings and allow them to move through. And to slow down enough to really listen to oneself, instead of being on automatic pilot of mind-numbing games and movies; yes, I did some of that too. And, I’ll probably forget all that seems so clear today, and have to go through the same pattern all over again tomorrow, or another day. That’s what we humans do. We forget. And then we remember.
Now, more than ever, it is clear as day that we are all one. In that sense, we are all here to help each other remember.
I hope that my remembering triggers your remembering that we are all lovable, no matter how productive or non-productive we are being. And that when things seem bleak it’s only because we have lost touch with ourselves. And we only need slow down, allow what needs to be expressed to come out, and to listen to ourselves, our souls. For our inner being never forgets, is always there, and can always be accessed.
I wish you all peace, love, and connection, first with yourselves/spirit, then with others.