have a problem? Dont worry

have a problem? Dont worry

I wake at 3 am in the pitch dark to the sound of a torrential downpour. The vision of two lovely couches sitting in a driveway 10 miles away makes me pull the covers over my head. Oh, shit. Those poor couches are going to be soaked. They were covered with tarps, but were sitting on gravel.

My dear friend, Gabi, had brought them down from her sold New Hampshire house along with other furniture. Because her garage became filled, the two small couches had to be left outside. I had arranged for a couple of guys with a truck to bring them here, but they couldn’t do it until Sunday—four days from now.

The sound of the rain through my open window becomes Monsoonish. I fumble for my phone and look at the weather forecast. Days more rain expected.

Oh, god, they’re going to be totally ruined!! I toss in bed, fretting as the clouds piss on the couches unfeelingly.

I complain to The Big Whatever, Why this Niagara of water tonight after days and days of sunshine! I’m becoming more upset and worried. Will I just end up having to take them to a dump? What dump? Will Gabi be mad at me?

Some wiser part of my brain speaks up. Katherine. Take a breath. There will ALWAYS be something to worry about. ALWAYS. Get that?!

 It seems obvious, but I do get it. I could stay awake nights worrying about something: the house, friends with cancer, money, refugees, crazy people with guns, what to do with the fucking couches—there are an infinite number of things to worry about in this world. Always. No matter what degree of seriousness of the problem, one can come up with something to lose sleep over—from cancer to couches.

So, was there anything I could do about the problem at the moment? No. Nothing. I turn over and go back to sleep.

I drive to her house the next day. The couches are wet. I can’t get them to my house before the next three days of rain, so they get left at the end of the driveway sporting a FREE sign. I take Gabi out for Quesadillas and Margueritas. The couches are gone by the time she gets back. Hopefully, they found loving homes and dried out nicely.

I didn’t really need them anyway.

This blog definitely applies to the Principle of RELAXATION!


breathe-cartoon-for-facebook1“My mind is all over the place,” I notice as I sit in my back jack, eyes closed in front of votive candles and tiny symbols of spirituality: a dolphin, a Buddha, Kuan Yin and a wee little cat. I had been lost in worries. All about the future. I bring my attention back to here. My body is relaxed. Nothing needs attention there. I am present and cozily wrapped in my blankey. “Where do I focus my mind today, then?” I ask, hoping to get a response from the Wise Voice that sometimes comes to me.

It does. “Focus on your breath like many meditators do.”

“Why do they do that?” I ask.

“Well, think about it. Breath connects you to the world. You are taking in oxygen molecules all around you.  They give you life and energy. If air were to be removed, you would be dead quickly. Perhaps that is reason enough to focus on breathing—with gratitude.”

So I notice the air going in my nose and feel my chest and my abdomen expand to receive it in my lungs. Not a big movement at all. Actually noticing it makes my breathing a little self-conscious.

“Yes, because breathing is so automatic. You don’t have to think about this life-giving energy from the world around you feeding you every moment of every day. It is just there. Notice also how the air absorbs the carbon dioxide you breathe out. Simple and miraculous, isn’t it? The world giving you life.”

I focus on my very small breaths in and out. My body knows just how much to breathe. I become acutely aware of this amazing synergy between my body and air. I feel it surrounding every inch of my body. My appreciation extends to water and food. My meditation has gone from my problems to being joyful at the wonder of life.

The timer plays its little harp music. Twenty minutes has sped by.

I set it for another ten. I want more time to breathe in the magic of life before I get absorbed in dealing with the material world again.

This blog applies to the Principle of RELAXATION