Close to seven years ago, I found myself at a crossroad. I was at the end of a bitter relationship and needed to make some positive changes in my life. I was overweight and not living a healthy life style. Drank too much, smoked too much and fought too much. I was a miserable, sad, bitter person, who decided to change her entire way of thinking and living.
At first it was difficult. I went from being addicted to the television, to not even having cable. I watched movies only. I stopped driving unless I really needed to. I walked every where. I started exercising, chanting basic mantras and reading and writing. This helped take my mind off of computers, television and food. I would walk six days a week, up to four to six miles a day. Before long I was jogging and taking hikes in the woods. I changed the way I ate, made healthier choices and within a year I dropped 65 lbs.
The way I looked at the world needed to change as well. I had so much built up anger. I dwelled on the negativity in my life. It made me sick thinking about all my past mistakes and misfortunes. At times it was hard to see that my life could be better and that I would find true happiness. I needed to find peace in my life. I needed to be inspired and have a positive attitude.
On top of inspiring me to exercise and eat better, my dear friend and mentor Pauley D. turned me on to spiritual music. My first CD was by Snatam Kaur. I fell in love with her voice immediately. You could say I became obsessed. I needed to learn Sanskrit so I would know what I was singing about and what all these mantras meant. I wanted to understand what I was reading, seeing and chanting about. Again, I became obsessed but in a good way. I started to feel my inner being change. I felt alive and worthy. I was so sick due to my chronic pain and Pauley helped me cope with it and change my lifestyle without having to go on prescribed medications. I feared the doctors and still do. I’ve seen what multiple medications can do to a person’s body, mind and soul. All I have to do is look at my Mum. I pray everyday that I don’t turn out like her and suffer in pain, the way she has for the past 26 years. Not to mention all the mother fucking side effects, that go along with all those medications. Shit! The side effects scare me more than the diseases do.
I must admit this transformation was not easy but meditation helped me tremendously. It took a while to learn to do it properly. Once I mastered it and learned to relax and just Be, I went from 5 minutes to an hour a day. Along with learning and singing mantras throughout my day. Soon I was hooked and have meditated every day since. Then I took up arthritis yoga. Yoga has been a huge part in dealing with my chronic pain. I suffer from Osteoarthritis and Fibromyalgia. Amongst a few other things that go along with those illnesses.
I found solace in all that was bad. I learned to enjoy being alone and being in my own thoughts. Meditation helped me release the stress of every day life. Stress is a killer for people like myself, who suffer from chronic pain. It’s NO joke! Meditation helped me let go of so much hostility and instead find kindness and compassion for others. I didn’t have much of that growing up. Not for myself nor for others.
It’s strange as I write this, it’s just occurred to me, that earlier this evening this very subject was brought to my attention. On how bad I treated someone when we were kids. This was not the first time someone has said this to me. I can’t deny their claims. They’re all true. I wasn’t a nice person and if you messed with me, I could be your worst nightmare. I am in no way proud of this but it’s who I was. This is my life, as I know it, to share with you all today. My life wasn’t perfect back then but it was my life and I am not ashamed of it. It was/is my life and it has made me the person I am today. I happen to think I’m a pretty cool human being.
As I think about this, it was only two years ago when a girl and I, from high school, started talking on FB. We hadn’t seen or talked to each other in probably twenty years. She kept saying how different I was and how nice I was. It made me stop and ponder… Wow, was I that bad? I had some serious reflecting to do. I have learned that as we grow in to adults, our attitudes, feelings and thoughts about life in general do change. Some for the good and some not so good. How I acted in my school age years and how I live my life, some thirty years later is completely different. I am proud of how I have managed to change my way of life and my way of thinking. It helped me become a better mother, daughter, sister, friend and confidant. This I truly believe and feel, with all that I Am. I will always be a work in progress. That’s what so great about growing and evolving. I had to find my own path in life. I chose a path to enlightenment.
Whenever I’m feeling down, anxious, stressed out or even happy, joyful and loving…. Meditation helps take me to an even happier, peaceful state of mind. I enjoy my daily mantra. I enjoy listening to my spiritual music every day. It centers me for sure. Especially when I’m not in a very good place mentally and or physically. Which happens often due to my chronic pain.
It still amazes me how meditation, yoga, living a healthier lifestyle, making better choices and doing good deeds, has helped me in having love and compassion for one another. It feels good to feel good about myself and how I choose to live my life. I highly recommend it my friends.