Here is an adventure in living beyond chromic pain. I’m healing from a break – days 17-18. I am re-learning the lesson of the magic of our opposable thumbs all over again…one that I haven’t had to explore since my very early days indeed. To date, I have managed to open 36 cans of cat food one-handed without slicing myself open. A sweet victory. I sat quietly for a good 45 minutes today on my mat in meditation and chanting and managed to keep my left thumb and forefinger in gyan mudra (see image of my forefinger touching my thumb) for about 5 minutes at a time before having to rest them. In comparison, I can sit for hours on end with my right hand in this position, and at one point I could do that with my left. Between walking short distances and gaining back the strength and coordination in my left hand, my dominant hand, I am getting a great look at where the bar is set day-to-day. Though I am still having to grab a nap during the day, and am feeling somewhat like a yoyo emotionally, just when I feel I am about to burst into tears over not being able to do something which used to be second nature, I suddenly find joy in the smallest of accomplishments. Life in the fully engaged, all my feelings coming up raw and edgy, strong in whatever direction their prevailing winds are blowing at any given moment.
I am grateful for the gift of the breath and knowing how powerful and profound breathing consciously, deliberately with my focus solely on it, and how this pulls me out of the seemingly incessant storytelling my mind engages in. It is quite the relief for me to be able to drop out of my mind’s chatter and rest quietly in the blissful peace of the steady, deep breath and the still point between the inhale and the exhale.
I am grateful to finally have my morning sadhana practice back in some kind of working order. I can finally sit again with an almost straight back, with only a slight lean to the left, and do my practice, the one that I have been doing for long enough that to be in it again feels like slipping my foot into a well-worn comfortable old shoe. For the past two weeks or so since the accident, I was only able to lay quietly in meditation – a blessing, to be sure, but my usual morning sadhana has always been such a steadying force for me.
The body wants to heal. I am learning once more to dig even deeper into patience and into allowing all that is coming up. I am learning to give myself a break, slow down, and listen more closely to the signals my body is giving me. These lessons are the guideposts for me to get out of the way, to unleash the healing power within, to be the witness to the healing miracle with all its multidimensional rainbow of physical and emotional expressions, to embrace this chapter in life just as ferociously and joyously as any other.