This morning I woke groggy and with a heaviness blanketing my whole body I had not felt in some time. Looking at the time I growled at myself for taking the luxury of sleeping in, immediately my mind raced to how I’d have less time for my practice. How would I ever get to where I want to be if I cannot simply get out of bed to my mat, to my meditation cushion?! All of these thoughts and more burned through me even as I buried my head further into the warmed down of my pillow.
Within these few waking moments and berating thoughts, I immediately felt his presence, quickly understanding the heaviness I felt. I rolled over to find Depression smugly grinning back, cozy on the other side of the bed as if he’d never left. He’d found a way in overnight. I do not know how. The door was double locked, chain slid into place, windows shut. Last we spoke, I’d made it quite clear to him we were done. Really done. I’d even taken back his spare key and used white sage to clear my entire home, multiple times, to ensure his negative energy no longer lingered in any corner, crevice and certainly not my bed.
But there he lay, confidant and assured that I’d curl myself around him, nestle my head upon his chest and refuse to leave his side as I had always done for so many long years. This time I looked at him in the eyes and saw how bedraggled and worn out he looked, how utterly unappealing in his appearance and manner. He no longer had that inviting quality about him. His promises of comfort and safety were worn out lines from his playbook. I know them well and no longer trust them.
Do you know how it feels to drop down into that old comfy place where you just want to hide and not have to answer to your higher calling, to Life, because you’re not even sure what that is today? Or if you ever really knew for certain? To just be so weary that the heaviness is an intoxicating pull downward, like a heavy narcotic, that keeps you drowsy and thick headed?
I won’t lie. The old temptation to slip backward was there. I lingered, hid my head under the covers, started berating myself again and feeding my fears before I’d even fed my belly. But there was a difference within me that did not used to be there. What is different now, is that my practice has made a subtle yet powerful shift within me, even if for today it feels like I have a lead weight in my heart. Even with that lead weight I am still strong enough now to lift myself from the depths of my sadness. I have the strength to swiftly kick Depression from my bed, drag his ass out the door, wash my sheets and my body (on HOT), and start to sage once more. I will not succumb to his lures. I will rise and meditate, even if it sucks. Because I have lived the alternative too many times before and that sucked more.
My path isn’t to hide and stay small anymore. My path is to keep walking; even if it feels dark and burdensome and I am uncertain which direction I am going. I keep going nonetheless and perhaps shed a few tears along the way. Today I don’t feel connected, or guided or supported, but my feelings are not always accurate. Sometimes my feelings are just residue emotions coming to surface, bubbling to the top so I can let them go, work through them and move on and forward.