Imagine you are walking along a trail. The trail is lined with emerald green grass. Beyond the edges of the path you see rocks and boulders covered in different mosses and lichen. Growing all around the rocks and trail are many different trees. What do the trees look like? Are they towering Pine trees with cones hanging from their boughs? Are they colorful Maples in their Autumn prime? What else do you notice about your surroundings? What do you see with your eyes?
In this wooded area, what does the air smell like to you? Do you notice any sounds? Maybe a chirping Chipmunk? Wind rustling through the leaves? Maybe the sound of your own breath? Or, is there complete quiet and stillness? Now, reach out...touch the bark of one of those trees. What does it feel like? Does the trunk have a rough texture? Or, is it more smooth? Maybe pick up a rock...what does it feel like in your hand? Is it heavy? Coarse? Maybe soft and fuzzy from the moss?
How does your body feel? Does this place bring you a sense of calm or peace? Are you inclined to continue walking down the trail? Or, do you prefer to stand still and soak in your surroundings?
Now, take three deep breaths, each being deeper than the last...focus back to where you are as you are reading this page. What do you notice? Welcome to Mindfulness.
After the discovery of a Pituitary Tumor and an Acromegaly diagnosis in 2018, my surgery was followed by radiation treatment. Not only was I dealing with the fatigue and aftermath of these invasive treatments and my life being turned upside down, I was in a constant state of stress...the not knowing if the treatments would work, what side effects I might have from the medications, if my insurance would cover my medical costs, and what is my future going to look like?
Initially, I had a resistance to mediation, taking time to pause, or any kind of stress reduction practices. But, my reluctance soon gave way to curiosity and I found myself in an 8-week meditation and Mindfulness class. For the first few weeks, I would attend the class and politely oblige to the instructors directions, but my mind would take off toward all of the things I needed to get done that day.
As the weeks went on, I began looking forward to the 90 minute class, and I became grateful for taking time for myself. I LOVED sitting my butt on the tiny round pillow, listening to the chimes and focusing on my breath. I didn’t worry about whether I was doing it right or wrong...there is no right or wrong!
Whether I left the class feeling peaceful, energized, or stirred, and regardless if I immersed myself back into the day and my madness, I knew for those 90 minutes that I had the opportunity to be present, calm, and without stress.
I went on to become certified in guiding Mindfulness practices (MBCT-Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy). I combine it with my background in Gestalt, bringing a holistic and co-active approach to reducing stress and tapping into oneself for outer growth.
My hope is to share this simple, yet potent practice of Mindfulness with you so that you might find moments of peace, calm, and being present. I invite you to join me, let’s see where that trail might lead. Meet me here! For those facing Pituitary diseases, you may find more information on Mental and Emotional health here: Pituitary World News. Risa