One of my primary intentions in beginning this blog was to document my journey through the mindfulness program outlined by Jon Kabat-Zinn in ‘Full Catastrophe Living.’ Other bloggers who have undertaken similar journeys, ‘on my way to mindfulness‘ and ‘My Yoga Room‘, are admirably and honestly describing their way through the schedule and various processes. Where am I up to? Still breathing. Counting my breath, for long periods of time. Watching my breath, in and out… A. A. Milne Understands…
“So it does!” said Piglet. “And it comes out!”
“Doesn’t it?” said Eeyore. “It goes in and out like anything.”
“I’m very glad,” said Pooh happily, “that I thought of giving you a Useful Pot to put things in.”
“I’m very glad,” said Piglet happily, “that I thought of giving you something to put in a Useful Pot.”
But Eeyore wasn’t listening. He was taking the balloon out, and putting it back again, as happy as could be….
‘In this learning process we assume from the start that as long as you are breathing, there is more right with you than there is wrong, no matter how ill or how hopeless you may feel. But if you hope to mobilize your inner capacities for growth and for healing and to take charge in your life on a new level, a certain kind of effort and energy on your part will be required. The way we put it is that it can be stressful to take the Stress Reduction Program.’
(Jon Kabat-Zinn, Full Catastrophe Living)
This quote stood out when I began reading the book and I appreciated the humour at the time. I now appreciate a deeper irony in these words. It is profoundly affirming to find the place of knowing that if you are breathing than you are doing well. At the same time, I have found it extremely agitating to experience the tumult of opening up channels of energy, healing, insight and communication.
I have really committed for better or for worse to this journey. For better and for worse. For whatever it is. What may come.
the weeds we hate
grow so well
(Simon Williams, Winter 2010)
Shifting my fight with the weeds to an openess to learning from them. Learning to love, to be kind. Where this commitment invites wholeness, integration and connection it is not a selfish journey. Because there is simple magic in being prepared for understanding, being willing to hear and notice. Trusting to be heard. I am grateful for support and love from family, friends and therapists.
…Brother, I hold you, like you hold me
broken pieces of pottery
let it go, fade away
we will make ourselves anew this day
Hear me sing, hold my hand, we are not alone
Hear me sing, brother, look! We are almost home
We will make new containers for these awakened spirits
with the dust of our memories of home
and in the shape of things to come…
(Simon Williams, 2004)