The morning was snowy and grey in Park City. I awoke with the urge to get outside and walk to our neighborhood park to sit on the bench lakeside. The bench was covered with a light dusting of snow and as soon as I wiped it off and sat down, I began to sob. Tears of sadness rushed down my face as I began to let go of the tension, the holding, the heaviness in my body. I did my best to practice allowing my emotions (energy in motion) move through me without attachment, labeling, or judgment.
After several minutes, I began to hear the birds sing and the ducks fly above me which gently brought me into a place of noticing nature all around - the trees, the sounds, the crisp cold air, and the frozen snow that blanketed patchy areas of the ground. As I arose to walk home, I went in and out of hearing the birds sing. They became louder when I put my attention on them. They silenced when my thoughts took over - almost as if they instantly disappeared. In and out of presence, with my thoughts than my surroundings, a dance of ebb and flow occupying my return home.
This is the practice of presence. Allowing ourselves to be human when thoughts of worry, fear, and sadness hijack our attention. And, allowing ourselves to bring ourselves back, consciously choosing what we are allowing in, what we are focusing on, and what we are attaching to. I can feel myself taking things personally. I can feel my ego rise and fall in wonder of my role to be, to lead, to see. It feels disorienting and yet, I know that things have to surface to heal.
I am concerned at what is coming. I am concerned at the shift in data - the tripling of cases in the last few days in the U.S.(more here) - with the clear acknowledgement that the numbers are skewed low due to lack of testing and a decision in some parts of our country to stop testing in order to triage and treat the sick. I am finding myself searching for the center point of faith, trust, and hope and the impact of the wave that is growing in strength and scope. I see others this morning searching for the same.
In this field of teeter tottering emotions, of light and dark, of optimism and skepticism, of love and fear, we have a choice. A choice to come together in the former – to align our lights in faith, in love, in hope, in collective action for each other, for hope, and for what is to come. Just like the crocus and tulips sprouting up from the ground, pushing their way through the frozen soil and bark, they grow towards the light to bloom with color and beauty.
This is their natural becoming. This is ours too.