I usually mention “being present” or “being in the moment” in my posts but until I read Elizabeth Mitchell’s inspirational post, I did not realize how often I am my own obstacle. When I read Elizabeth’s words of “get out of your own way,” it occurred to me that I am only in the moment when I am not standing in my own way.
Here is another way to consider it: I am my greatest obstacle when I am least aware that I am aware, the opposite of Michael Singer’s definition of consciousness, “being aware of being aware…the seat of Self.”
When we are in “the seat of Self,” we immerse ourselves in each moment for the experience of it, allowing all of it to pass through us completely, not holding onto a single breath. It is as basic as inhaling and exhaling, the essence of living.
Breathing/living completely requires constant awareness and attention; if we get sidetracked, we attach first to this, then to that and we find ourselves short of breath. Our physiology constricts; our head is over our heart. We need to get out of our own way.
Currently, I am participating in Kristen Lamb’s two-month, online blogging course, which I highly recommend for all bloggers; I am about to engage in writing the initial draft of a second novel; I have a nonfiction manuscript that requires revision; the response to my blog pleases me more and more every day. Every one of these is an opportunity if I breathe fully and do not attach.
Fortunately, I have the luxury of being older as well as being chronically ill, and I’m serious in my application of the word luxury to both advantages.
Aging provides me a considerable archive of experience—albeit one of attachment—yet I pause, mainly because I’ve been there, done that, which is not being present. I catch myself relying on the known, which does not fit as it once did. So, I am considering the class, my writing, and this blog–each for what it is–through perspectives unknown to me. It is taking some time but in understanding that the moment is all I ever have, time is yet another luxury for me.
As I have written numerous times, chronic illness keeps me more in the moment than any resource in my life and as such, I discovered worlds I would never have known, and there are so many more! Every day, I meet people with the most extraordinary stories, constant sources of inspiration and information.
Always, I am grateful for my readers and for the incredible insight that so many of you reveal in your comments as well as in your correspondence with me. Frankly, your response is humbling and energizing. It keeps me on the search for blog post topics. Truly, I thank you.
As I reorganize and reconstruct, I am taking a break from blogging, returning on October 28. As usual, Mark Nepo succinctly describes the coming and going that is living:
“Being human, there are endless times we need to be still and as many times that we need to move. But much of our confusion as modern citizens comes from trying to have the one we are more comfortable with substitute for the other.”