Pages

Monday, December 28, 2009

Savasana

When I lived by myself, I would spend hours without speaking. I've never been one to talk out loud to myself, since my mind chatters like a book club after the third bottle of wine all the time. Why add an actual voice to the mix?

My friend Michelle calls it noise, and she's right. So much of my interior monologue is noise, and often noise that does not serve me. When Paul is late coming home from work, my mind asks, "What if this is the day? The day he's hit by a car, and disappears from this world forever?"  I drift down on the Good Ship Mindfuck---where would I live? Where would I find work? What men could possibly serve as role models for my boys? How would I get out of bed? How? How? Just as I find my eyes tearing up, I hear the click in the door, and all is right again.

Just noise.

I had a good extended weekend with Paul's family. The rain came on Christmas Eve, and the green grass appeared, fresh and verdant, much like the newborn Christ Child. Others want a White Christmas, but I was happy to see the colors return, saying: We're still here. We endure.

We did what families do---eat, talk, wrap ourselves in the blankets of old stories and familiar laughter. It felt good. And yet---when Owen had his meltdowns, the noise returned. Why does his act this way? Am I too lenient? Do I give him too many chances? What do they think of him? Of me?

I felt like I was on a stage, flapping my arms like a drunken crone, and the audience was wincing, murmuring, wondering, "Who ever told her she could do this?"

I know this is noise. I know that it is dark, and that it does not serve me. Yet, I indulge these fears, these discouragements, these insidious questions. I pick at them, like a jagged edge of a hangnail.

It has taken me almost thirty-five years to recognize when I'm in this state, and I'm working on the really hard part now----acknowledging the thoughts, and letting them fly away.
 
When I practiced yoga, I felt like I was training my mind to do exactly that. During Savasana, I considered my mantra---often it was "Thank You," or "Let Go," but most of the time it was my baby's name--"Owen." Over and over again, I would think of my son, and my love for him would glow inside me, and I swear that glow was real. As I closed my eyes and listened to my breath, thinking the name of my beloved little boy---here and there, in transcendent miracle moments---the voices stopped.

I want to make this happen more often. For 2010, I want to live with more intention, and less noise. Some call it prayer, some call it the Holy Spirit, and some people have other names for it. I'm not especially concerned about the names, as much as the end goal: to seek moments of gratitude, to stop living in my fears, and to consciously ask God to silence the voices that no longer serve me.



26 comments:

mama-face said...

Ohmygosh...we might actually be the same person.

Doesn't that throw you into a panic attack?

I've even been thinking along the same lines as you as far as the new year goes. Maybe if we try together? :)

Unknown Mami said...

Noise fills my head constantly. I strive for quiet. I understand that I create the noise and I need to nurture the quiet. Here's to less noise in 2010!

adrienzgirl said...

I embrace the noise. Why? There is no turning it off. If I fight it, it just gets louder. I actually do give mine it's voice though. I don't know why, but I talk aloud. I talk aloud a lot, to myself, to no one, to everyone. Craziness I embrace that too!

Nikia, May and da kids said...

Intention, YES! Fear, NO! 2010 will be peaceful for you then.
I think it was "The Secret" that involved living a life with intention. Maybe I'll have to re-watch that video to help get the concept again. I love that Owen gave you peace. Was your life ever so noisy and so focused before you had the boys??

For the past three years, I have been able to muffle those voices that I heard often through spirituality, prayer and religion. Before that, I'm embarrassed to say that I let the voices get the best of my OFTEN and worse than that, willingly.

That was beautifully written Nancy! Thanks for that bit of clarity about the voices. Although when I express my thoughts about the voices I hear, it isn't worded so eloquently. I feel better knowing I wasn't alone with the conversations going on in my head.

May

DUTA said...

We all get this noise and we become used to it as it's part of our life. There's no danger in it as long as it doesn't dominate our thoughts completely leading to a medical case of anxiety.

Bethany said...

I love your writing. I love this, and I love your purple cabbage. I came her for the cabbage (mentioned on Ms Moons) but got so wrapped up in your writing that I forgot about it. It was such a nice treat/gift when I got to the bottom of the page and there it was, blooming for me! I love your book group analogy, and your thoughts on helping the noise receded. Yes, yes yes.

Coby Goesling said...

Just beautiful.

I have found myself entertaining the same thoughts recently, especially in the wake of my friend's death. I've also been entertaining insecurities about my children, focusing only on what I need to improve upon, or their embarrassing attitudes and behavior, instead of seeing the bigger picture. The Bible says to "take every thought captive unto the obedience of Christ." I know I need to do this more in order to silence the noise.

Ms. Moon said...

Oh yes. Same here. Same, same. The noise is especially cruel to me in the mornings when I wake up. Sometimes I try very hard to let them flow past like a river and refuse to let myself dip into them. Just let them flow. And sometimes, that helps.
Why are our self-messages so damn hurtful? Why are they so negative? Oh, I wish I had a magic wand to wave and shut them off.
Until then- I'll do my best to let them flow without getting involved.
And that cabbage- yes, as beautiful as a camellia.

Melani said...

wow I have never thought of all the "stuff" going on in my head as just noise....I used to get really worried when my husband was late from work without calling, especially when it was raining outside, total noise of panic in my head....and I would clean. Cleaning helps me with those thoughts of ..."what if?" and "why hasn't he called" or "why isn't he home yet, he is already ___ minutes late"...and not discuss it with my kids. I pray when I am worried about what others are thinking when my kids are loud at church/Target/grocery store and then let it go, not worry about it.
Loved your post! I am going to strive to less noise and a more peaceful place in my own head.

Cinda said...

Beautiful! We might need to form a 12 step support group or something! Here is to space in our heads to just breathe....

A Mom With A view said...

...wow same here re: the worries...and the voice inside my head...I started a worry blog to address this and it seemed to help...or writing them down on paper...Ive practiced being in the now and meditation, yoga also..."The Power of Now" by Eckhart Tolle..is like my mantra for addressing this..keep bringing your self back to the now...its a lifelong lesson..to keep practicing.. also looking for the source of your worry..some memory or situation from the past that keeps you in fear...so here's to our gift of today..."the present"...enjoy it..!!

Michelle said...

I'm the exact same way! I constantly worry about things or wonder what terrible things people are thinking about me.

Corrie Howe said...

Love the flower and the purple color. I'm hoping you will get your wish and spend more time in positive thinking.

Rebecca said...

Just found your blog from Bless Our Hearts.....I too have some of that same noise in my head. Brings tears to my eyes sometimes. Drives me up a wall with worry a lot of the time. But like you said...something happens then it's gone and everything is okay. I'm just living to be okay.

Busted Kate said...

I think I'm going to be taking a page from your book... because I definitely fall into the Mindfuck category often. Like worrying every night my husband goes to work (he is a police officer), it makes for a lot of restless nights. I think I need to figure out this mantra thing you're talking about...

AudreyO said...

As I was reading your post, I was thinking of a woman I work with. She talks out loud to herself. I often think there's a conversation going on and it turns out it's her talking to herself. Makes me nuts LOL.

Bekah said...

This is a beautiful, honest post, one that many can realte to. Good luck in your quest.

Traci said...

What a beautiful post. I have a lot of noise, too. I used to do yoga and returning to it is one of my 2010 goals.

There is an award waiting for you on my blog.
Happy New Year!
:-)

Sonya said...

Oooh what a beautiful cabbage that is!!

Well I have that noise in my head too..even more since I moved here. I now have panick attacks wondering what I would do in a country that I don't understand if something happend to my husband. I hope for more silence aswell. I wish it for you also.

Mama Zen said...

I absolutely love this post. I'm a regular passenger on the Good Ship Mindfuck, and I would love to silence those voices, as well.

My Life in Purple said...

There's a blog award waiting for you over at My Life in Purple!

http://iris-mylifeinpurple.blogspot.com/

kys said...

The voices in my head have been keeping me company for years. I doubt I can shut them down now.

Kristin said...

Live with intention...I like it!!!

Cat said...

I know that feeling of noise... learning to release worrying and negative thoughts is a big issue for me, especially with my ex out there somewhere.

erika said...

I love it when someone so beautifully articulates how I feel. I really love this piece, Nancy.

Jen said...

It's called Voice #2, and it's the irritating and destructive voice. I hate it; I'm constantly shoving dirty socks down its gullet. Not doing a lot of good, it spits the socks right out and keeps yammering away.
I need more intention in 2010, for I think that will silence the voices, or at least make them more supportive. It's time, and much needed. Good luck, we'll be doing this together!