Photo Credit alliegoodrich.com Today I am 3 weeks post radical surgery to remove a malignant…
photo by alliegoodrich.com
At some point or another we will find ourselves waiting. Waiting for a call to connect, test results to come in, a coffee pot to complete its brew…The experience of waiting comes in all shapes, sizes, colors and intensities. It helps to consider waiting as a teacher, as someone I trust to point me in a more helpful direction without necessarily giving me directions.
About 4 weeks ago “waiting” arrived in the form of a rare and complicated malignant skull based tumor. In just a few days I will undergo radical surgery scheduled to last longer than if I were to drive from MA to PA. (I might just imagine I am on a trip but swap the destination to somewhere warm and tropical. With monkeys, of course!)
Waiting has been tricky. At times sticky and dense, other times fresh and light, but always LONG. I’ve been surprised by the loneliness. While I feel loved, supported and held, there is an isolation that, too, is its own experience and teacher. While waiting is teaching me patience, and loneliness an inner resilience, arriving at such lessons has been anything but simple.I know I am not the first to meet teachers such as waiting. There is an entire university full of such professors and their students! It’s just my turn to be enrolled.
Fear, sorrow, panic, anger, and uncertainty swarm the nights that seem to last longer than my clock might rightly indicate. Fortunately, love, peace, acceptance, and compassion startle me back into remembering no emotion, no feeling is final.
With the support of my practice I am becoming OK with not feeling OK. Meditation is the raft upon which I am able to more skillfully allow the ups and downs of the waiting experience to point me in a more helpful direction, fear facilitates courage, compassion facilitates healing.
I once read an article about the currents in the Pacific Ocean. It described how more skillful sailors don’t necessarily set a course from point A to point B; rather, they wait for the right currents to take them where they need to go. Like these sailors, we too can allow the allow the lessons in the waiting, the currents in the ocean, to point us in a more helpful direction without necessarily giving us directions.
Otherwise, our waiting, even if LONG, becomes life lost rather than lived.