Alternately weepy and enraged, a 4 day tidal wave of hormonal surge showing no sign of relief, she sits on a plush grey floor pillow, in her tranquil new meditation room, candles softly glowing and all background noise shut outside the door behind her to meditate- because surely mindful concentration on her breath will bring some sense of calm. That’s what all the yogis say. That’s what she knows to be true. That is what she teaches. If you sit with your breath, allow yourself to be guided through seated meditation, observe the thoughts in your mind, and gently guide yourself back to the sound and sensation of breath, the mind will calm. Equilibrium will return. Balance will be restored.
Or you will get so hot that you have to strip down to nothing but your underwear, you’ll shake your head and actually pull your hair in frustration because why won’t he get out of your brain and leave you the hell alone, you’ll get irritated with the sound of your teacher’s voice guiding you through the single longest stretch of stillness you’ve ever endured and when he says, “Remember, we’re not after any specific end or any specific state, we’re simply here to observe the breath” you will actually say out loud that he is out of his damn mind and if you don’t get some peace by the end of this you’re never doing it again (even though you know you’ll be back in that spot in just a few hours), you’ll cry (again) because now you’ve failed at the one thing that was sure to bring you some relief, you’ll lie back on the rug because sitting upright brings intense reminders of all the abwork you did yesterday and it hurts to breath and cry and sit up and try to stay calm all at the same time so fuck the floor pillow, you’re lying down, and now that you’re lying down nearly naked you feel a little better but you’re also starting to fall asleep and having some seriously bizarre half conscious dreams about former colleagues and a cruise ship and what you would do with the ability to shrink like Ant-Man and right when you start to feel some sense of calm which is really just falling asleep you’ll hear a bell chime signaling the end of your “meditation.”
She laughs at how absurd that meditation felt and how futility doesn’t even begin to describe the last 25 minutes. She is supposed to call her mom but nothing in the world sounds worse than speaking out loud to a human- any human- right now. She’s supposed to walk the dog. She’s supposed to return emails. She’s supposed to reconcile accounts and complete about a hundred other administrative minutia which comprise the only part of her job she truly cannot stand. Instead, she takes a shower and put on a put of coffee. She unloads the dishwasher. She feeds the dog. She does simple, mindless tasks and gradually the tidal wave eases back and her head starts to clear. When she puts the glasses and plates away, she’s fully present in putting the glasses and plates away. When she pours her coffee, rolls out her mat, practices a little yoga… she’s calm.
The dog begins to squeak her new toy. The phone rings. An email dings into her inbox.
Every neuron in her brain begins firing like someone pulled the fire alarm in the middle of the night. Panic. Anger. Greed.
I was finally there! You have GOT to be kidding me with this. WHAT THE FUCK DOES EVERYONE WANT?!
So, she takes a deep breath and begins again. It’s all she can do. Begin again. Begin again. Begin again.