It wasn’t until I became ill, that I was able to walk down the path, I began so long ago. It wasn’t a terrible illness, but a mild virus, that had taken over my sinus cavity, causing severe vertigo. Vertigo; ugh, I have never experienced, such a thing, that caused such a lack of brain function. I felt as though I was perpetually floating around the ocean. Thoughts became hard to form and carry out, and my memory dwindled. I can only relate it to what it must feel like to go senile…the forgetfulness of what I intended, but fully aware that I had forgotten.
A full time student, with a full time job, and mother to a fifteen year old cat who is dying of cancer; a stressed out, busy girl I am. Becoming sick, myself, I was forced to slow down and almost stop.
This is not for anyone to take pity on me. This is to let me express how I came to look at life, the way I set out to, but, briefly abandoned, a short time ago.
With my mind in suspension, I decided to renew my meditation practices. I started with the first of the Four Noble Truths of Buddhism: The truth of suffering. I had to acknowledge my suffering, receive it and give it the consideration, it was so clearly asking for. Not to wallow in it, but to acknowledge it. I tenderly accepted the truth of suffering as my sickness was only temporary.
As for what is true, and what is an end, I look at my beloved feline, George. He has only a short time left on this earth before I have to make the decision to euthanize him. Rather than a persistent and consistent worry about the inevitable, I must take every day as it comes and appreciate it to the fullest. Otherwise, I’ll rob myself of what little time George and I have together. To me, enjoying my time with him is the only option.
And with that, I began to look and touch life with sympathy and mercy…or at least I tried. Especially at work I may have forgotten, in some situations, to respond with kindness. I had and still have to remember that tomorrow is another day, and it is essential to forgive and to ask for forgiveness. Others are suffering in their own way. Burdening them with my distress filled reactions doesn’t help matters.
Finally, I became even more grateful. I gave and give more thanks to the Universe. Better attention to my nightly gratitude list was born. I began repeating over and over again, “Thank you for this healthy body”, as I took the medications to cure me, as I bent to tie my shoe, as I comfort George, and as I write this article. Well-being arises from gratitude.
In a way, I am grateful for misfortunes above. Being present, acknowledging what is, relishing every moment with George, receiving the people who surround me, with careful attention, and forgiveness rushed to the forefront of my mind, as I became submissive to my own body.
It is my wish that you readers are walking down your better path without a negative incentive. If you have taken a wrong turn, no matter the circumstance, I hope this helps you. If you are happily strolling down the avenue of wisdom, may this give you more reason to stay on the same course.
Thank you. Be well.
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