tenderness continues

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

a few of my most excellent tools in the ongoing battle with my fear & unease - especially loving May Cause Miracles & BrenĂ© 

This being human is a guest house. Every morning 
is a new arrival. A joy, a depression, a meanness, 
some momentary awareness comes as an unexpected visitor...Welcome and entertain them all. Treat each 
guest honourably. The dark thought, the shame, the malice, meet them at the door laughing, and invite them in. Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond. Be like melting snow – wash yourself of yourself. Put your thoughts to sleep, do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. Let go of thinking.   Rumi

I've posted this favourite Rumi quote at least twice before on this blog. It's always spoken to me but I realize now that in the past  it spoke to me in a hushed, barely audible whisper. You know that feeling when you've heard the same something 100 times and all those times it always resonates with you somehow, it feels like it's sinking in but then the 101st time you hear it - oh, then the angels begin to sing and you feel that same something with your whole heart & soul not just your intellect. That's how I feel about this Rumi quote now ... just recently I heard this quote again with my whole being - with relief and gladness.

Be like melting snow – wash yourself of yourself.  Rumi

My battle with anxiety has been just that ... a battle. A mean & nasty battle. I had my first panic attack in 8th grade. I've been waging this war since I was in junior high school. It makes me so sad to think of that young girl who lived in fear of so many things, I can remember her and how she felt like it was only yesterday. Several times in my adult life I have tried taking medication for anxiety - it never felt right and in fact it most often felt awful - the side effects of these drugs make you feel much worse than the fear and anxiety you're taking them for, most medications take weeks and weeks to get used to and for the side effects to eventually wain, in the end many of these drugs just plain don't work for everyone. I've decided that medication is not my cup of tea. I believe instead & with all my heart that what I need instead of a prescription are a few simple shifts* in perspective and these tools books that I'm reading are helping me and confirming those beliefs. The first and most important shift I need to make is to stop the battle. Stop battling my thoughts, for the battle itself I realize now causes at most of the pain I suffer from. Pain and self loathing. Instead I let the thoughts come, say hello, acknowledge them and remember that they are just that ... a harmless thought and not reality. Some feel good, bad, mean, sad ... but I try not to label them. It's OK to feel them. Don't try to push them away, don't beat myself up for having them (this is the prime battleground). But don't let them move in, decorate, get comfy, think they can hang out with me. Breath deeply and when the time is right let them go.

* I say simple shifts in perspective and though in theory they do sound relatively simple, it's a lot of hard work. This change asks of me to be super aware of my thinking & thoughts and at all  times. It takes tremendous practice to notice such a well worn, often unconscious habit, to remember to breathe, to remember that it's OK to feel those feelings, that it's crucial also to let them go, to not hang onto them and most importantly while practicing all of this to treat myself always with love and tenderness. I do still feel my fear(s) but in a fresh, less intense & judgemental way. I am a true beginner at all of this but I do believe I can make these shifts and I have hope, big real hope for the first time ever that I can, that I will end this battle once and for all. The secret I finally get is that my foe is not going anywhere, those fears are always going to be there ... I am choosing not to fight with them. Can I have an Whoa ! please ;-)

Put your thoughts to sleep, do not let them cast a shadow over the moon of your heart. Let go of thinking.  Rumi

another beautiful song heard on Q CBC radio 1 -  Hannah Georgas - Enemies


  1. I've been out of sorts this week myself particularly yesterday. It's funny how one can be so happy one day and really down the next. Anxiety is no fun and I occasionally have days when I am overwhelmed with moments of sadness since my mother's death. Gracie, my cat, usually cheers me up. What would I ever do without her?!!

  2. I admire and respect that you share your personal struggles.

    You are far braver than you realize.

    That Rumi is a clever fella.

  3. first, have to say I agree with Sybil N. Second, with my own ongoing struggle with the anxiety demon, one thing that has been helpful for me was to thank "it". Those feelings and awareness were helpful to protect me and I needed to thank 'it' for that and let 'it' know that I didn't need it so much anymore - it had done it's job and could relax now. Nancy LeB

  4. I hope you are able to settle this anxiety and reach peace with yourself. Through your photos, cooking, relationships with pets, relationships with people that are close to you, the time and effort you put into showing people you care--you radiate so much love, I hope you can learn to redirect some of that to yourself.


Hey ! We LOVE comments here at 29 Black Street.
Thanks for stopping by.