Monday’s Mediation: On The Present Moment
This past weekend I found myself in Colorado, a place I’d never been before, with a family not my own, tired and slightly disheveled from traveling. And all that was reasonable until- just hours after landing- my eyelid spontaneously quadrupled in size.
The technical term may be “stye,” but my characterization of the condition as “creature from the black lagoon-esque,” “Star Trek extra,” and “abused wife” felt much more fitting. The people around me, lacking blood relation, fell prey to the obligation of courtesy: “It’s really not that bad, Annie.”
We all knew the truth. It was monstrous. I had gone from Living Simply to Living Cyclops-y in a matter of a plane ride, an altitude change, and a batting eyelash.
So I did what any person would do: I captured the horror of my appearance via iPhone camera and forwarded it to my sister in a hurry. And her response was nothing short of illuminating.
“This very moment is the perfect teacher and it’s with us wherever we are.”
It sure as hell was– Vail, Colorado, right on my freaking eye.
But of course she was spot on, that sis of mine. A temporarily disfiguring eye condition is a far cry from qualifying as a top-tier traumatic moment thus far in my biography, but it was a moment– the only requirement needed to be a teacher.
So I tuned into it, looking the big scary in the face (literally), and therein were so many instructive self-truths: I am wired to be most comfortable in my home and normal environment. I react in strange, stressful, and sometimes unpredictable ways when that comfort is compromised. My mind-body connection is uncannily alive. I succumb to the vanity of wanting to present the best version of myself when meeting new people, and experience great upset when I’m unable to do so.
Every moment has all the tools we need to teach us, if we would only tune in to listen and discover. Even the really awful, stressful, scary, infuriating moments- and especially those. If we fight the urge to run away from them, and instead look them squarely in the face and ask “what are you here to teach me?” we will surely come ever closer to the answer.
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