The Trouble With Meditation

I started meditating years ago, when my children were toddlers and sanity seemed as elusive as a bathroom break. My closest friends know that my small walk-in closet was the only closed door my children never guessed I’d be sitting behind, so with coffee mug in hand, I would steal away in search of serenity.

All these years later, I still bring the mug, now with more healthful tea, and sit on a cushion in that closet. The space can be light or completely pitch black, it is very quiet, and is just big enough to lie down if I need to stretch my body out.

But although my arts training has been good discipline in many ways for this activity, I am acutely aware that when I need meditation the most, it seems to be the hardest time to practice. At times when I am feeling unbalanced, untethered, unloved, or underappreciated, my tools seem to abandon me. And when I’m in a crisis, it simply feels like a comical waste of time.

I recognize that I am blessed with a non-judgemental approach to my sitting practice. I’ve had little formal training and therefore the how, when, why, and where of it aren’t very prescribed. I’m not even sure why I started or have continued for this long, other than I know with all of my heart that this is the path, my path at least. I also know that perseverance is key in almost all disciplines so even when I am struggling with inner turmoil, I usually spend time every day on the cushion.

But honestly, the cacophony in that closet is, at times, unbearable. It only reinforces how badly I need the grounding, but there is nothing else to do but observe the situation. There is never a question in my mind whether I should or shouldn’t meditate on a given day. I always go through the right motions. But when I grasp for salvation from that activity or any other, it moves out of my reach. I have no babysitter, as Pema Chodron would say. Guess I’m growing up in spite of myself.

About Carolinda

A provocateur of wellness and seeker of wisdom, I appreciate levity and simplicity in an artistic life, frugality but with requisite fun, and the freedom to pursue adventure. Blogging here since 2007.. or so...
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