11 May Making small potatoes big
Cathy, there is a thin and porous membrane between mind and body. Set aside the idea that the mind is to be exalted and the body ignored. It won’t serve you. One is not better than the other. Don’t judge. Don’t rank. The body is not an enticing dwelling place for the devil nor is the mind the answer to all your problems. They exist equally in your life to serve you. Listen to both equally. Examine their messages then choose.
I am having surgery in a few days, eight to be exact. I have a papilloma in my right breast. Essentially, it’s a polyp in a duct. It’s not cancerous, of that I am sure. But scalpels and full anesthesia and foreign objects inserted into tender spots is in my near future. In the grand surgical scheme of things, it’s small potatoes. But my breasts are not that small anymore (I couldn’t resist reveling in the good news) and emotionally it feels big.
What’s been striking me more acutely than usual – and what inspired me to start this blog — is the gift of life’s bumps (no pun intended) and how much there is to learn from all of them. Big and small.
This morning, I woke up before the sun and immediately became aware of anxiety in my body. A not-so-subtle unease, a skin crawly, first-day-of-school butterflies kind of feeling. It was a visceral, undeniable reality. I felt the sensation before my mind assigned an explanation. My body spoke before I did.
As I wrote years ago, “If our eyes are windows to the soul, then our body is it’s voice”. This morning my body’s voice was loud and clear. On some level, somewhere, somehow, I am afraid. I am not safe. I am not at peace. Threat looms. Undeniably and inexplicably, my reptilian brain has formed a government and staged a coup.
I gotta say, I hate when this happens. My body is betraying me and I don’t know why. I want to understand the source of my fears. I want an explanation, god damn it. I want peace talks between my messy reactive brain and my civilized thinking brain. And, if I can’t have an explanation I want it to just go away! Grrrrrrrrr.
This is my mind on fear. This is my mind craving control. Where should I put my attention that will serve me?
I could swim around in the why forever or I can get to work letting go and accepting. So, I say “yes”. What am I saying ‘yes” to?
I’m saying ‘yes’ to the truth of this moment, right here and right now. I’m not saying the roots of our pain are not worth exploring but there is a time and place for everything. In the midst of all that is about to unfold, this is not the time for why. Not anymore. This is the time for acceptance. This is the time for vision. This is the time to fill my mind with hope, serenity, trust, faith, peace, power, vitality, health, strength, healing.
Really. Think on each of these words. Go back. Hope. Serenity. Trust. Faith. Peace. Power. Vitality. Thriving. Strength. Healing.
Cathy, your mind needs to swim in these words. You need to step aside from the worry, the anxiety. You need to put those on your alter and let the power of life, real life and love, heal them. Set them aside and bring to the fore what is infinite and eternal. That list of words is your salvation. I am not your salvation. Those words and their capacity to heal you in this moment, THAT is your salvation. I am not here to descend from the sky and pluck the pain from you. I am here, in your head right now, to remind you of your choices. You have many choices. You can worry. You can dig into the past. You can moan and groan. You can deny. Or you can accept what is, welcome it in your life, say thank you and put your mind on the good.