How I Arrived

Last night I decided that I would start really trying to be more “mindful”. I struggle to keep my mind quiet. I love meditating, but know I need a lot of work to get to where I need to be in my head. To that end, I started a course in “Mindfulness”. This blog entry is the result of the first few hours.

I am in my bubble, high above my home, protected and secure. It is early dawn and the sun is just peeking over the horizon. The clouds are diffusing the light rays and the iridescence creates such beauty everywhere I gaze.

I hear the chirping of many birds that are nesting in the trees below me. Their melodious songs would awaken me if I was asleep, but I am wide awake, basking in the glory of the dawning day. Every inch of my body is vibrating with joy because I am so warm and cozy in my bubble.

I can smell the new blossoms of the spring flowers that have been revelling in the light rain that is falling as this day dawns. I love the smell of the rain almost as much as I love the sound of the raindrops hitting my bubble and the ground below me.

Other than the birds singing and the rain falling, there is that special silence that exists only when almost everyone is still sleeping. The whole world is still and tranquil.

The world around me is where I am right now. I know that everything that has happened in my life, all the experiences and relationships, has brought me here, to where I am now.

I now float back down, in my bubble, to the inside of my home. I see a very neat and clean space that I, myself, have created to bring me pleasure. I see almost no clutter. I have made this space mine by having the things I love close at hand. I have many books that I read in the peaceful reading nook by my big windows. I see my sound system that is almost always playing the music that moves me and fills me with such great joy. I see the photographs of those people I love the most. I am at peace here, in this nest that I have created for myself.

When I am in my home, this wonderful place that I have created, I find myself happily doing the things that mean the most to me. I am frequently cooking, as doing so relaxes me and fills me with joy…the joy of creating a new or favorite dish to be eaten and enjoyed by myself and those who join me at my table.

I also love to dance, by myself or with friends. I especially love to dance with Val as he is such an amazing ballroom dancer. Dancing fills me with joy and makes me feel sexy and so very alive…and it burns lots of calories!

I see me reading or writing, as I get great pleasure from doing both. I love living in the worlds of the books I am reading. I love being able to express my thoughts and feelings with the written word.

My love of learning often leads me to my computer where I take many, varied courses that enrich my life. I have always been and will always be a life-long-learner.

I hear myself laughing out loud so many times each day. Laughter is contagious. Others hear me laughing and join in. It is so good for our souls.

I am now floating back up to the sky in my bubble to look back at some of the events from my childhood. I am living in a little, blue log cabin, nestled in a woodsy area on the banks of a babbling brook. My brother and my parents are here with me. We are only going to live here during the summer while we are waiting for our new house to be built. But, as happens all too often, the house is not finished on time.

I am going into grade 2 at a new school at the end of this summer and my brother will start kindergarten. Our summer is perfect! We swim every day in the cool, sweet water of the meandering brook. We adopt two little ducks that frequent our yard and swim in our brook. Oh, no! They are crushed dead in a hurricane! My brother and I are very sad.

Across the road, my mom’s cousin has a small farm with chickens and a horse. There is a “crazy” chicken that sits on her nest of eggs that will never hatch.

The horse, Major, is rather old and somewhat of a “nag”. My brother is very attached to Major. Benny, my mom’s cousin tells my brother that Major will be his birthday gift in September. Neil decides he will keep Major in the attic above his bedroom in the new house. Neil is devastated on his birthday when he realizes that Benny is only joking. I am feeling very sad for my little brother, who is so very trusting and kind.

We laugh a lot as children. We are loved. We don’t have a lot of money or material possessions, but we have each other. We enjoy each other’s company a lot right now. Life is so good!

My young self is very happy. I see a little girl with buck teeth and a terrible overbite from sucking her thumb. I have very thick, curly hair and am very small for my age.

I want to be a ballerina. My Uncle Paul has given me the “stage name” Betelgeuse because I will be a star. My parents are very encouraging and help me to follow my dream. They are never pushy about it. You would never call my mom a “stage mother”. The first time I appear on the stage of the Westchester County Center as a mouse in the ballet, Cinderella, performed by the Westchester Ballet Company, is scary but amazing. I am on my way to becoming Betelgeuse.

There are many pivotal moments in my life. Some of them are positive and others are not.

When my grade 3 teach tells me to “shut up” and that “nothing you say is important” it deflates me so much that I never, ever, speak in class again until my last year of university when a visiting professor from Harvard, teaching a philosophy course at Northeastern University, asks me to come to his office for a chat. He wants to know why I never participate in discussions. He tells me that he can tell how intelligent I am by the papers I write and the marks on my exams. His caring is a major step in my becoming the confident woman I am now.

Meeting my husband and falling in love for the first time is magical! Leaving my country and moving to Canada, not knowing anyone except my husband, is difficult at first, but meeting so many new friends through my teaching career helps me see that this is where I am supposed to be.

Having three miscarriages is tragic. Then to give birth to a baby at 26 weeks gestation and having him die after four days is something that takes years to get over. Giving birth to my son, almost exactly a year after that, is magical, although he is over seven weeks early and has to stay in the NIC unit for two months. He is such a fighter that he beats the odds. I am so proud of the amazingly talented man he has become.

When my husband becomes ill with depression and alcoholism, I close myself off from others. I feel that I will bring them “down” by talking about what is going on with him. I see now that I was probably wrong about that.

The suicide of my husband, although tragic at the time, makes me so much stronger and shows me that a person can experience terrible events but can come out of them to lead a life of great happiness. It teaches me that we choose how we react to events in our lives and in so doing, we create our lives, either as victims or as strong, victorious people.

The birth of my two wonderful grandchildren is such a precious gift. They fill me with such great love! Their dad is amazing! Although his marriage is over, he is strong and way less stressed in his life now. He is showing his children that truth and being ethical is critical in life. He enriches their lives so much and they are an amazing family. I am so very thankful.

I see myself changing from a person who is afraid to speak, to a person who loves to speak. I am told by some that I should speak less, but I will never let that kind of statement get to me again.

I am strong and self-sufficient. I know how to love myself enough to be able to love others the way they should be loved. I also know that I am responsible for my own happiness and that nobody else can make me happy. People add so much joy to my life and that is a very precious gift.

This is the journey I took last night with my first guided mindfulness meditation. I found the whole experience quite amazing and look forward to doing this as often as I possibly can. It gives me such clarity!

One thought on “How I Arrived

  1. Erin Kurt says:

    Ellen, this was such a beautiful piece of expression. You have had so many experiences that could have broken you but you consistently made the choice to grow and become even better. I have such love and admiration for you. ♥️

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