“I am no longer waiting for a special occasion; I burn the best candles on ordinary days.
I am no longer waiting for the house to be clean; I fill it with people who understand that even dust is Sacred.
I am no longer waiting for everyone to understand me; It’s just not their task
I am no longer waiting for the perfect children; my children have their own names that burn as brightly as any star.
I am no longer waiting for the other shoe to drop; It already did, and I survived.
I am no longer waiting for the time to be right; the time is always now.
I am no longer waiting for the mate who will complete me; I am grateful to be so warmly, tenderly held.
I am no longer waiting for a quiet moment; my heart can be stilled whenever it is called.
I am no longer waiting for the world to be at peace; I unclench my grasp and breathe peace in and out.
I am no longer waiting to do something great; being awake to carry my grain of sand is enough.
I am no longer waiting to be recognised; I know that I dance in a holy circle.
I am no longer waiting for Forgiveness. I believe, I believe”
Mary Anne Perrone
I came across this poem, out of the blue, as happens sometimes. I can’t even remember where I found it, and that doesn’t matter. What mattered was the recognition of the moment when I suddenly read or hear something that resonates in an instant. Words that instantaneously feel like a message that touch a part of me – seldom reached – and grow there. I was intending to write my own poem for the blog this week, but here was one that pretty much said it all.
Recently I have felt sad. And yet, personally I have so much to be happy and joyful about. I have tried to analyse why I feel this way and recognise how hard it is to be a human being. This poem also raised questions. The line in the poem “I am no longer waiting for everyone to understand me; It’s just not their task” – made we want to add – I am no longer waiting to understand myself – and this raised the question – is it my task to understand myself? Because I really don’t understand myself, not completely.
What I do know is that my innate nature is to want to know, understand, analyse to the nth degree. And yet here I sit with this strange sadness and tiredness surrounding me that I just cannot fathom or shrug off.
So – me being me – I understand that much about myself– I started to analyse…
I know I got deeply upset last week when reading about child brides and abuse. As a mother, I have a very deep ache inside that all children should be loved and respected and held safe and anything that violates that leaves me in pain. For a while I didn’t know where to put it. Like a square peg in a round hole – and it seems I only have round holes for storage of such things. It hung around for days.
I felt overwhelming anger when I saw news reports of overcrowded beaches and tonnes of rubbish left behind by thoughtless people during a worldwide health crisis. It irritates me that some people do not take Covid seriously and recognise how seriously ill it can make people – sometimes fatally.
This morning I read Chris Packham’s plea to help stop HS2. I hadn’t really understood the full impact of it on our economy and environment until I took the time to read in detail the impact of the programme that Chris presented.
Then I noticed that I am quite fed up with the whole Covid thing. How and why it started and the impact on us all. Some more than others. I am mourning the part of my life that was routinely normal, without the stress of thinking everything and everyone is contaminated with a deadly disease. I could go places and do things and enjoy myself and other people without a second thought. I am missing people who don’t ‘qualify’ to be in my ‘bubble’. Everything seems messy, fragmented and complex.
I even noticed myself scowling as I gave a man a wide berth when out walking. I felt intense irritation that he dared to invade my space. Hadn’t he ever heard of social distancing or knows what 6 feet looks like? After all, aren’t men supposed to be good at special awareness?
All these things started building inside me gaining power – then started spilling out into my life. It affected how I felt and how I reacted. It had made me fatigued, anxious, sad and moody.
Then of course, because I couldn’t rationalise how I was feeling it started to make me feel there was something wrong with me and my self-critic pounced on the opportunity. “Of course, you aren’t a very nice person” it said, with glee “You are snappy and moody – no one will want to be with you”.
It seems I forgot the power and true meaning of mindfulness – “Knowing what’s happening while it is happening, whatever it is”
Instead, I had been driving myself mad with preference.
This morning I led the morning daily sit. As always, as the wonderful training of the Mindfulness Association provides us is to guide from our own practice. It came with a blessing – called insight.
During the seemingly short practice I recognised all that had been happening and as I guided others, I too did the practice. We allowed ourselves to rest in spaciousness. I saw that I had been holding myself in tightness of all this stuff. We allowed ourselves to recognise that it is actually quite tough being a human being. We invited ourselves to rest with kindness for ourselves.
As we did this it all started to become clear and drop into place. Suddenly I saw the gap between reality and my desires. I also saw my seemingly insane tendency to want to fix everything with the intense desire for stillness and peace in and around me. I prompted the others in the group that it’s ok to not be ok and realised I had forgotten that it is ok for me to not be ok too. Thank you Mindfulness.
With a sigh, I let go of it all. My body softens and I can feel my heart warming again. All is well.
“I am no longer waiting for the world to be at peace; I unclench my grasp and breathe peace in and out”
This week I invite you to check in with the gap between your desires and reality and see how it is making you feel. Is it possible to just let go and ‘know what is happening while it is happening whatever it is?”
I welcome your comments and feedback so please do leave us a message or write to me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org
Until next time, take care and be kind to yourself.
If you have completed an 8-week Mindfulness Course or weekend one of the Mindfulness Association Level 1 Being Present training, you are welcome to join Jacky for Module 2 on Wednesday evenings online from 7-9:30 for 4 sessions starting on Wednesday 29th July. Click here to find out more.
If you have completed the Level 1 Being Present training or the Mindfulness Based Living 8 Week Course then please join Jacky and Heather on 31st July for the first weekend of the Online Compassion, level 2 Responding with Compassion training.
You can also join Jacky or other Mindfulness Association tutors on the free daily practice sessions at 10:30am and 7pm.
Jacky has contributed a chapter to the Mindful Heroes Book entitled “Turning Empathic Distress into Compassion – A Hero’s Journey for Family Carers”. You can hear an extract from the chapter where she talks about the results of her MSc Studies in Mindfulness on Compassion & Family Carers. You can download a free sample of Jacky’s chapter here.