Since January 29th, I’ve been participating in the 30 Days of Writing challenge. On many days the prompts from Tyler Knott Gregson and Andréa Balt at writeyourselfalive.org have been instrumental in moving me past the overwhelming terror generated by too little sleep and a blank piece of white paper. Other days I’ve worked on my own projects, mainly getting this blog going and an upcoming (!) book.
Today the muses have, as the old saying goes, quit preachin’ and gone to meddlin’!
“What aspects,” inquires the prompt, “of your physical health or wellbeing are you neglecting or not actively caring for, and why?”
If you’ve been reading along for a bit, you already suspect that there are about 742 likely answers to what I might be not exactly neglecting but not actively caring for either. It was the “why?” part that, literally, sent me scrambling to feed the dog a little early, fix tea, fluff and goo my hair immediately for an appointment later in the day and seriously consider using my writing time this morning to work of the list of FAQ’s I need for the website.
Then I tried three slow, deep breaths. (A strategy that actually does send physically calming messages to brains contemplating panic!) And three more. And three more after that until I decided to pick up my pen.
There are two major things I’m not actively engaging for my physical health and wellbeing right now. One is walking. The other is my Qigong active exercises.
We’re going to pause right here for a paraphrased message from my much missed friend, Steve Glenn, who did the remarkable Developing Capable People program:
People who are caught up in experiencing shame and blame
are not in a resourceful state for learning anything new!
Steve was right. So, I keep a box inside my head, way over in a corner, where I can stash any shame or blame I might currently be experiencing whenever I need to learn something new. It works! You can put your stuff in there, too, until you get a box of your own. It works! And, when we’re done, you can, of course, have your shame and blame back, if you want.
Now, “why?” is not always the most helpful of questions because many of the answers are beyond our awareness, caught in beliefs and habits and fears that may not be conscious. (Thanks again, Steve!)
In this case, there are a few whys jumping up and down to be heard!
It’s cold! 12 degrees F this morning, to be exact!
I’m busy! Well, I am. Busy doing lots of things that involve sitting in a chair, often drinking tea and passing out Kleenex. Or quilting. Or writing.
The meditation—which I’m doing more of—and cupping and energy point massage feel better! And I’m better at them!
I’m afraid of falling!
And now we’ve come to the heart of the matter. You see, I am afraid of falling. Probably failing, too, but right now we’re talking literally falling down.
I’ve had more than a little practice! Sometimes in the street, in the dark. Rarely able to get up without help. Re-injuring things that were supposed to be healing. New scars to go with the old.
My knee surgeon says he’s quite OK with me being afraid to fall down.
And, even though I know, experientially, that I’m better since I started learning Qigong, I haven’t quite learned how to trust that yet.
I appreciate all the whys clambering to be heard. And I believe they’re all trying to help. Really! It’s time, though, to move on to a new question. One of my questions:
What then, will I do?
[Brief break for taking action…]
So, I turned the thermostat up two degrees, which may make getting out from under the quilt in my chair a bit easier. I sent a text message to my dog walking buddy, who’s about to have foot surgery, to see if we might make a new plan for her recovery time that would allow me to go along with one of the other walkers, thus having someone to stop traffic or chase the beast or whatever, in the event that I actually did fall. Then I decided to use 15 minutes of my extra meditation time for active exercises. The ones I do feel comfortable with for now.
I don’t know about you, but I think I’ll leave the shame and blame in the box. There’s a lot more to do today!