05_22_09.jpgI have been on my back for the last 3 weeks or so, nursing an inflamed sacroiliac joint. What a pain! Literally. Every turn and twist, every journey to the bathroom (all of 25 painful feet) and every trek to the kitchen elicits mild and not-so-mild expletives. Thankfully, my daughter is in school and the walls are my only witness.

Of course, lots of time on one's back allows for insights, welcome or unwelcome. I do wish these marvelous insights would happen when I was licking, say, a large, double chocolate ice cream cone instead of lying supine on an ice pack.

But no, my insights seem to come to me when I have finally over-done something or other (stacking wood, mowing the lawn... talking...) and have no choice but to cry "uncle" and finally settle down to listen to my body's teachings.

So I have been listening from my bed, and what I am hearing, I must say, I don't like one little bit.

  • Meditation is not simply a misspelling of medication.
  • Pfish food is not a physician recommended treatment for stress.
  • I should stop treating meditation like a four letter word. It may be my ticket to feeling better.
  • The five minutes I spend each morning saying a quick hello to God is NOT meditation and five minutes of 'thanks' at night are also not enough quiet time to relax someone like me with a mind that races faster than a speeding bullet.
  • 15 minutes on the treadmill once a month is not exercise. (It’s not???)
  • I have been ignoring my body’s warning sign for a long time now, and I have been running from...

OK - here it is...  missing my husband.

Yes, even after 8 years, I miss him. Not all of the time, not every day, not even every month. But right now, I miss him.

I don't want to miss him. I am in love with a good man, a man who I know is good for me, a man who agreed to come to San Diego with me if I want him to, (and I do!), a man who thinks I am wonderful, and a man who even my mother would love and that is saying a whole lot.

But the funny thing is, the more I let myself love my new man, the more I remember Mike.

As I lie in bed, I see that I have been sprinting a good 500 miles an hour, trying to run from this truth, the fact that I still have a little bit of grieving to do.

But wait. Maybe it is not grieving. Maybe it is just remembering?

I used to think, when I met new love, that one 'era' would end and another would begin. I can see now that although I am given the opportunity to love again, I still have my old life/love in my heart. It is not 'one or the other'. Both loves can live in synchrony.

This morning I imagined them sharing 'man hugs', you know, when men briefly slam into each other and then quickly jump apart? And then I cried a bit, either about my back pain or about my heart pain. I don't know which it was, but I do know when I was done, my back seemed to feel better.

So yes, it is time to get serious about medication - oops - I mean meditation, to slow down, to stop running, and to appreciate the gifts I have been given. The grass is green, the lilacs are in full bloom and filling the neighborhood with lush aromas, Anneke is headed to final exams feeling competent, and I get to explore my old and new love. Other than the (lessening) pain in my back, I feel luckier than I have any right to be, I am sure.

This morning I will make that oft procrastinated telephone call to our local meditation center and further the process of slowing down my body and learning mindfulness. The new frontier!

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