Over the years I’ve tried so hard to cultivate a meditation habit. I went to classes but stopped when I realised that paying a tenner a time to fall asleep on the floor of the village hall was a bit of a waste.
I’ve tried tapes (yes, we’re going back a bit!), apps and books but nothing really stuck. When mindfulness became popular, I hoped that would be ‘my thing’, but the truth is I find quietening my little brain a massive challenge. In the end, I just gave up trying.
During the dark months after my mum’s death, distraction was my best friend. I spent a fortune on audiobook subscriptions because I was constantly on the go but never felt safe enough to be left alone in my own thoughts. I hated my own story so much I wanted to be permanently in someone else’s, even that of a fictional character. Listening to stories was my lifeline.
What I’ve noticed during this crisis however, is that after my initial wall-climbing panic about work, my chattering brain is so much quieter. I can garden again with only birdsong for company. I can clean the house, go shopping and walk the dogs in the contented company of my own thoughts. It’s not quite meditation, but it is a level of stillness I’ve not experienced for a very long time and I think, a step in the right direction.
It’s not about doing or having…it’s all about being