I am in the middle of making a list, a list of right now, a list which unfailingly centers me, slows my brain. Except in this fraction of a second, my brain is picking up speed, is attempting to pull me in another direction. Just quick, I think, the urge to do something just quick very real. I note the urge on my list, then note my choice to stay where I am, which is with the list, which is with the right now. I list that there’s hair falling into my eyes, that there are rolls of washi tape on my desk, that there’s a question within my heart, What am I waiting for? That last one, that question, becomes an invitation. I spin from there, words falling from the tip of my pen, the urge to do something just quick gone, I linger on the page with the (new) present conversation.
There’s a line from John O’Donohue that is deep in my heart this week. The words loop through my mind and settle in my heart. This is a good thing, this looping, this replaying. Be excessively gentle with yourself. A reminder and, like the question on my list, another invitation. Be excessively gentle with yourself. The urge to do things just quick is gone. I move from one thing to the next, whispering O’Donohue’s words to myself, this sentence a mantra that softens me. Be excessively gentle with yourself. Before the call, before the class, before going to sleep. Be excessively gentle with yourself. Repeat, repeat, repeat.
We have a thunderstorm one afternoon, the bright sun disappearing and dark clouds filling the sky. There is no violent wind, no startling flashes of lighting, just deep rumbles and a steady, heavy rain. My daughter and I make cups of tea and curl into our respective chairs. It is exactly what my heart needs in this moment, the tea, the dim light, the parallel pause with my daughter. Sometimes life invites us to sink into softness, to linger a while longer, to do nothing just quick. The Universe begs us to be excessively gentle with ourselves. Because why would we not?
May there be kindness in your gaze when you look within.
May you never place walls between the light and yourself.
~ John O’Donohue ~