Feeling great!

Well, that's behind me now - blue skies ahead

Well, I’m tired. Really, really tired. But the project got launched yesterday, and with it another big deadline moves into my rear-view mirror. And now the way looks clear ahead.

We still have a few things to clean up, but the lion’s share of the work is done.  And I can move on.

In spite of the stress and fatigue and the pain I’ve been having lately, I feel great. I feel like I’m all in one piece, like my life is finally together. And even the leftover pieces that are a little out of whack, don’t crush me like they often do. I am in pretty tough straits, financially. I barely have enough money to make ends meet, and I don’t live extravagantly. I am having trouble getting my projects done at work. And my commute is about to double (and with it, my travel costs). I haven’t been sleeping well, and I’ve been having more and more pain. I’m also gaining weight, which doesn’t feel healthy. But at the same time, I’m really feeling good. All these situations, I can see, are temporary. And they don’t define who I am or what I’m worth. I have this underlying foundation of … well, wholeness, that gives me strength to go on.

Some of my friends who are very religious will tell me it’s God working my life. That could be. I don’t count that possibility out. Others of my friends who are more secular would say I’m “in the zone”. And that applies as well. Others would say I’ve reached a highly desirable state of equanimity. I say, I just feel really good. Solid. Like I’ve finally gotten myself on an even keel.

I think a key to this new development has been a regular routine, and also practicing my breathing. I’m actively developing a routine I can follow each day — I’ve followed a morning routine for some time, now, which has helped me to start my days much better. And now I feel even more strongly that a routine is useful for me. It helps me get my mind off the little details of everyday stuff, that I can just do rote, and it leaves me time to rest my brain and also think about things that are more interesting than what order to eat my breakfast in.

I’ve also been taking time to sit and do my coherent breathing in the mornings and again at night. I don’t always succeed at clearing my mind of distractions, but some days I do really well. I’m sure that there are people out there who have lots of input and ideas about what happens to our minds, hearts, and spirits, when we sit silently and breathe. I am very interested in what happens to the body — as the starting point for so much of what happens in my mind, heart, and spirit.

I’ve noticed that when I sit a certain way — as has been suggested — holding my back straight, with my chin a little lowered (reaching the top of my head towards the sky), with my hands resting comfortably in front of me, I get this really cool tingling sensation in my face and arms and hands. A friend of mine who had a stroke several years ago gets very spooked by any sensation of tingling in their hands or body. It means — to them — that they’re in trouble. But for me, it means that my spine is in alignment and my brain and spine are communicating more freely with the rest of my body, which can’t be bad, right?

I also find that when I am sitting, I often lean forward a little bit. I can’t even tell that I”m doing that, unless I pay close attention to my posture. All of a sudden, I’ll notice that I’m leaning forward, and I’ll have to consciously get myself to sit up straight.

I’ve also noticed that if I pay attention to the tingling sensations, I can tell when I’m out of alignment. So, I can sit up straighter and get back in alignment. That gives me something to focus on, that gets my mind off the coming day — or the day just now behind me.

I don’t sit for a long-long time. Just about 10 minutes. Sometimes longer, sometimes less. But the important thing is, I sit. And breathe. And it gets me off to a good start.

I think I really need to do better about keeping my mind quiet, while I’m doing this. Today was pretty difficult. I think all the excitement of the all-day launch yesterday had an effect. And I’m tired, too. When I’m tired, it’s hard for me to focus — even on the breath. I think that’s the neurologically induced constant restlessness I’ve been told about — my brain is fatigued, so it just keeps racing and racing and racing. I do think that I can do something about this and learn to calm down my brain activity so I can not be so out of whack. I just need to keep that mission in mind, when I sit down.

Mission… yes. It’s a mission, for sure. To chill and learn to master the craziness that can run me, at times. Starting small, with working with my breath and the behavior of my mind, is a start.

The nice thing is, by the time all is said and done, even if I haven’t been that good at keeping focused and chill during my sitting and breathing time, I still get up feeling great. What an awesome way to start the day. And even if there’s nothing else that I gain from this practice, that alone is enough.

Now, on to the day! Onward!

Author: brokenbrilliant

I am a long-term multiple (mild) Traumatic Brain Injury (mTBI or TBI) survivor who experienced assaults, falls, car accidents, sports-related injuries in the 1960s, '70s, '80s, and '90s. My last mild TBI was in 2004, but it was definitely the worst of the lot. I never received medical treatment for my injuries, some of which were sports injuries (and you have to get back in the game!), but I have been living very successfully with cognitive/behavioral (social, emotional, functional) symptoms and complications since I was a young kid. I’ve done it so well, in fact, that virtually nobody knows that I sustained those injuries… and the folks who do know, haven’t fully realized just how it’s impacted my life. It has impacted my life, however. In serious and debilitating ways. I’m coming out from behind the shields I’ve put up, in hopes of successfully addressing my own (invisible) challenges and helping others to see that sustaining a TBI is not the end of the world, and they can, in fact, live happy, fulfilled, productive lives in spite of it all.

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