For years, my New Year’s resolution has been to not make any New Year’s resolutions, and for all these years, I have been overwhelmingly successful.
This year, I am sticking with my tried and true approach … and I’m playing around with (I’m doing it but have commitment anxiety) the idea of having a theme for the year.
My two-word theme for 2022 is gentle surrender. I have a feeling it may take me the entire year to even understand the meaning of these two words, separately and together.
I am not often gentle with myself, and I have a hard time surrendering.
With that decision having recently been made (or played around with), I embarked on my first day of meditation.
I’ve given lip service to meditation but never gone all-in with any sort of regularity or commitment.
I have committed to sixty-six days. It coincides with a course I’m taking. I’m hoping it’ll prove beneficial and perhaps become part of my daily routine going forward.
I’ve committed to ten minutes per day. A guided meditation provided with the course.
Week one, I listen to the same track each day. Week two, another track all week, etc.
Day one. The track I’m supposed to listen to is thirteen minutes. I’m already annoyed that a ten-minute meditation is taking three extra minutes of my day.
I should be sitting on the couch or lying on my bed, but my current morning routine doesn’t have ten minutes (or thirteen) carved into it for sitting or lying, and I’ve heard from many places that I shouldn’t “should” on myself, and I know if I force perfection (sitting or lying), I won’t do it at all today which means I likely won’t do it tomorrow or for the next sixty-five days.
What’s that quote? Don’t let perfect be the enemy of good enough?
I need to brush my teeth and retainer, so, I decide to start listening to the meditation while brushing my teeth with the thought that once I’m done, maybe I’ll go lie on the bed for the remainder of the thirteen minutes.
Before I shut the bathroom door, my cat, Oliver, slips into the bathroom with me. He jumps up on the toilet seat, meowing and asking for attention.
Now I’m brushing, petting, and listening. I mean, meditating.
When the meditation guide starts, her pace is so slow, I have an immediate shot of adrenaline through my body. Is she going to talk this slowly the entire time?! I’m used to listening to podcasts on 2x.
This is day one. I can do this.
I’m mentally doing the guided body scan and mentally relaxing each part of my body. I can’t fully relax my arm because it’s actively holding and using my toothbrush while the other one pets Oliver. But I am imagining them relaxed.
I listen to the entire thirteen minutes while multi-tasking.
Key phrase: I listen to the entire thirteen minutes.
I leave for my usual daily thirty-minute morning walk, come home, and get ready to work out.
I walk into my dining room/workout studio (thank you, Covid), and before I pull my yoga mat away from the wall, I notice Oliver has vomited right next to it.
Well, at least he didn’t throw up on my mat.
I clean it up, slightly annoyed, but mostly thankful I noticed it and didn’t step in it.
Maybe this meditation thing is working. I emotionally pat myself on the back for keeping calm and carrying on.
Double-checking the floor is fully clean, I pull my mat away from the wall to start my exercise video.
“Start at the back of your mat. Reach both arms up to the sky and swan-dive down, placing your hands on the mat. Crawl out into a plank and do a push-up.” I don’t even get this far because as soon as I go to place my hands on the mat, I see that Oliver has vomited on my yoga mat.
I give a heated exhalation, grunt, and say out loud to no one in a particular, “ARGH! He threw up ON my mat, too!"
I stomp and grumble my way into the kitchen, grab the paper towels and spray cleaner, and wipe off my mat totally frustrated, totally annoyed, and totally grossed out.
Why does it feel personal? Why my yoga mat? My husband is in the living room (his gym) working out like it’s his job. Why wasn’t HIS workout space targeted?
Day one of meditation.