It was one of those times when a friend said something so profound, it resonated with every bone in my body.
I walked away thinking about it the rest of the day.
Here we are two weeks later and I’m still turning it around in my head.
I’ve been working hard on me, myself, and I these days. (Well, along with cramming all the other stuff I do into a day, but I have good intentions.)
Doing my physical therapy, strengthening my core, protecting my back when I’m lifting things, watching what I eat…I’m focusing, people. Now if I could just get back to doing some cardio then the docs would really be happy but hey, baby steps.
I’m also working on those head games. For years I described myself as a realist, someone who was practical and prepared for any outcome. Someone who didn’t beat around the bush when it came to really seeing myself. A non-bullshit artist, so to speak.
But I look back at all that ‘straight talk’ I was dishing out to myself, and I hear the stories I was really reinforcing. Dropped another glass? God, I’m so CLUMSY. Got lost driving somewhere? Geez, I suck at directions! Make any one of the million mistakes we humans make in a day? That was so stupid!
Clumsy. Sucky. Stupid.
These were the things I was telling myself, all the time, about simple mistakes I made. If you say something often enough you’ll start believing it so I was pretty much beating myself down, over and over. For not being perfect.
Yep. Not making that much sense now.
So anyway, that’s the sort of work I’m doing, trying to get my head as healthy as my body.
I was with my friend Gem a couple of weeks ago when she gave me the most striking advice about how to keep my mind clear.
“You are the sky. Let the clouds pass over.”
I just blinked. It sounded simple yet so utterly true.
That afternoon I was sitting on my couch, enjoying the calm before the after school storm, when I happened to look up through the window. We have a half circle one near the ceiling that isn’t covered by blinds, so it gives me a peek into the world outside.
We had the most beautiful blue sky that day – almost azure – just the tiniest shade lighter than that striking blue color. It was the kind of day when a breeze pushes white puffy clouds across the sky. The kind of spring day I live for, really. And Gem’s words rushed through me like a wind as I watched clouds move through the window frame, leaving the bright blue sky as untouched as if they’d never been there at all.
I am the sky. These things that happen – thoughts, mistakes, battles with the kids, life – are my clouds. They pass in, I learn from them, and then they move along. It’s only when I grab on and won’t let go that they muddle my head and make things complicated.
So simple. And so true.