If a flamingo can achieve balance standing there on one leg for hours, maybe I can too.
I was doing my morning meditation just now. I reached over to the wall to grab my dry erase board. I didn’t want to forget my focus for this year: Balance.
So of course, the sleeve of my sweater tipped a full 24 oz. tumbler of water completely out of balance and poured the entire contents all over my desk. Apparently, the tumbler was relying on me to keep it balanced. Who knew?
My first response was profane. This was a perfect response as I had just read, moments before, that it would be helpful for me to observe my emotions without judgment today. As I say in session, listen to the data the emotions bring. The data here was that I am still working on rebalancing my trauma-survivor hormones so that I can heal this quick and exhausting hair-trigger reactivity. Thank you, body, for that helpful information. Working on it!
And then laughter
Right there, in the middle of the puddle attempting to drown my desk and all that dwelt thereupon, I saw the beautiful decoupage heart, given to me by a phenomenal sister-friend about two years ago at the beginning of the pandemic. (Yes, it really has been two years.) That’s it in the picture. It reads “Now. Here. This.”
I said out loud, “Really?? Really??? THIS??? THIS is what I needed right now??” The heart seemed to smile that universe-confident smile back at me. “Yup. This.” And I laughed. I turned the double meaning around in my mind: “Now. Here. This… Now hear this.” I’m listening.
Another of the lessons in my reading today was about intentionally connecting with same-gendered friends. The strength and foundation of our same-gendered friendships helps us pace our lives. It feeds our endurance. In fact, for me personally, achieving that goal of balance has everything to do with learning to pace myself even in the middle of a struggle (pandemic) that is stubbornly refusing to offer us an end date.
I used to meet with this friend and another friend-colleague about once a month for peer support. We would share food, life, stories and help one another professionally. These women have been a huge part of my resilience and endurance.
We haven’t been able to meet since 2019. And yet, here is my sister-friend, showing up quite literally in the middle of my mess! (I did have a brief thought to take a picture of it there in the wet, but it’s made of paper and I didn’t know how long the wax coating might hold.)
And then gratitude
The words “so grateful for you,” shared frequently between the three of us, can feel so two-dimensional and flat in texts. I’m grateful for the years that we have shared them face to face, with hugs and good food, so that we have that context to draw on when we type or read the words. It isn’t enough, really, and yet, somehow it is.
As I mopped up the mess I was grateful that just last night I had finally cleared off an entire mountain of papers from my desk that had been waiting for me to sort the file cabinet after our almost-recent move. This could have been really bad. I also have a small stack of precious photographs right there on the desk: A picture of my mother as a baby, a great grandfather as a young man, pictures of my daughter and I when she was small. The water stopped just short of them.
Yes, destructive things happen. Sometimes we get spared. Sometimes we don’t. Sometimes we are the clumsy person tipping the cup. Sometimes we are the innocent cup. Balance does not require these actions to be fair. Balance requires only that we be fully in this now, in this place. We observe. We use whatever comes at us as well as we possibly can.
The lesson remains
We are dealing with things so much more weighty, so much more important than water spills on desks. And yet the lesson remains. Right now, be here, in this, regardless of what “this” is. In doing that, you might consider ways that you can:
- Tend to your holistic health. Consider your nutrition, exercise, sleep, relational connectedness, mental wellbeing.
- Pace yourself – not too slow, not too fast.
- Respect your emotions as data. Look below the surface to understand what your gut brain and heart brain are telling you.
- Rely on your supports and be a support to others. Create community any way you can, even if your preferred means are currently out of reach.
- Notice your gratitude. The things we are grateful for don’t necessarily undo the things that are not okay, but they do remind us that there is more.
There is always more, now, here, in this.
Would you like some help finding balance in the “Now. Here. This.” in front of you? Contact Tiffany today and let’s make a plan!