Sunday, February 6, 2011

Catching up: including minor setbacks and new beginnings

    Phew.  It's been forever since I've written.  And I didn't want to get off-track with my weekly commitment this early in the game, but I'm also trying not to be a drill sergeant with myself.  So, there it is.  Time to get back on track.

     So, what has happened since the last time I wrote? Plenty (in my humble opinion).  So, I'll spend most of this entry giving you the highlights, and than try for a more substantive blog (read: about some topic of interest, perhaps) later this week.  Maybe pay a little penance. ;-)

   So, if I were to give you the big headlines of my life in the past three weeks or so, there would be most like be three of them:
   1) New beginnings (or "returnings"--I'll explain)
   2) Discouraging setbacks (mostly financial) and
   3) "Self-balancing" (socially, emotionally and routine-wise--I'll explain that too)

  So, first of all, let me delve into the new beginnings/"returnings".  And now I'll clarify that by "returnings", I mean returning decisively back to things that I have not prioritized lately, but which have been priorities to me in the past.  So, the biggest thing in this area, I think, are the three new weekly endeavors that I have going on.  On Tuesdays, I'm now participating in a "Meditation in Everyday Life" class at my meditation center (the Baltimore Shambhala Center), which has been surprisingly grounding for me.  I'm enjoying that.  (This Tuesday will be the 4th of 5 weeks, so that will end soon.) Then, on Wednesdays, I have started attending my reiki teacher's (Greg Lemich's) new reiki share, which just started last week.  My reiki practice had been on the decline over the past few months, so this is a wonderful new "returning" theme.  Greg's reiki share started last Wednesday in Laurel, and will be running every Wednesday for a while.  Finally, I've also started attending a weekly Biodanza class on Thursday evenings, which is so wonderful and joyful for me.  I'm really looking forward to continuing that each week as well. 

  Other than those three weekly things, other new beginnings/"returnings" for me included participating in an Intentional Drumming circle (a first!) on January 14th, which will now be meeting once a month, AND playing a solo gig a couple weeks ago at Bread and Circuses in Towson.  (It was such a great time, and it had been forever since I'd done a solo gig.  More to come, though! Stay tuned!) Also, I've had a flurry of people contacting me to start voice/piano lessons, which is a good thing. 

  Now for the setbacks/challenges: There were a number of them, all in a relatively short period of time.  The snowfall that we got on Wednesday, January 26th turned Alex's already-long commute from Northern VA into an 8-hour nightmare.  And then, within a couple of days, I had an emotional melt-down (Friday), our boiler broke and had to be replaced (Saturday) and my car got broken into (Sunday).  Phew!!!

  This ties into the last "personal rebalancing" theme: I honestly don't know how I would have gotten through all of that "crap", emotionally, at least, if it hadn't been for all of the self-love work that I've been doing.  The other major tool that I needed? (And still need?) Meditation.  Despite the fact that I've attended the Baltimore Shambhala Center for almost 7 years, and attended a bunch of retreats, I've had a very push-pull relationship with meditation.  But then, I've had that push-pull relationship with almost ALL important things in my life, honestly--ESPECIALLY anything involving self-discipline (e.g., setting up a regular commitment of some kind).  But, the weekend that all this crap was happening to me, I also attended a two-day (Saturday/Sunday) workshop at my meditation community.  (Also, I had just been to the first "Meditation in Everyday Life" class the previous Tuesday.) Granted, we didn't actually DO a lot of sitting meditation during the workshop (probably only an hour or two!), but we were giving and listening to talks with other community members and maintaining meditative awareness throughout.  So, on Monday morning, as I emotionally struggled (crying at times) and was on the phone, making numerous calls to ensure that my car window (smashed open the night before) was fixed that very day (sleet called for overnight!), I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was self-love AND meditative awareness that picked me up and sailed me through that whole process.

   So, one of things that I'm rededicating myself to right now is meditation practice.  I sat twice (morning and night--sometimes at midnight!) Friday and yesterday, and I sat this morning.  Looking forward to it again tonight.  And looking forward to continuing on, letting these challenges rest in the past.  Moving on in awareness and self-love to continue my loving explorations of self-growth.  More soon!

Love always to all of you reading.  Thanks for joining me on this journey!