Brain

Day 21 - #365MeditationChallenge

As you can see from the video below, I'm still navigating the "muck".   

Ok fine.  Enough with the surgar-coating, let's call it what it is: depression. 

I live with depression.  I like this description because it implies that depression is like my roommate, which feels like a pretty accurate description of her.  

Depression lives in the basement and there are times when I don't see her that much, or spend that much time with her.   

Other times, she is right in my face... I'll come home and she'll be everywhere I am: in my kitchen while I'm cooking dinner, in my bed while I try to fall asleep, in my office while I'm trying to work, in my shower in the morning and yes, even in my meditation room.  

When she is that present I find even the basic functions of living to be super challenging: going to sleep, getting out of bed, cooking, eating, showering, brushing my teeth.  Everything feels fucking impossible.  Like it requires a gutsy, over-the-top "performance" just to show up in my life.  

And she talks.  Oh. My. God.  The incessant talking.  And she is fucking crazy.  Like really crazy.  And Dark.  And Twisty.  And she doesn't think very highly of me.  Or my choices.  Or my life.  

You can see why I don't love hanging out with her.   

Other times, I barely know she's there.  It's like she retreats to her basement lair and recharges for her next foray into my life.  And while I do enjoy these little breaks, I have learned to brace myself; I never know when her next appearance will be.  

And here's the thing: I have tried everything I know how to do to evict her.   

Initially, I resorted to some less-than-healthy behaviours; alcohol, smoking, risky behaviour, promiscuity, and binging/purging food.  Thankfully, these not-so-good choices eventually got replaced with healthier ones: a healthy diet, exercise, good sleep habits, prayer, meditation, music, yoga, therapy, coaching, plant medicine, shamanism, reiki, herbs, light therapy, and writing.   

At one point, I gave anti-depressants a try too.  For me, these seemed to shut her up some but in someways it made me even more like her; an existence that I couldn't  bear.

I have even tried making friends with her.  Trying to really understand her and where she comes from, hoping that this might somehow change her nature or incite her to move on or move out.   

And the thing is; through this 25 year relationship that I have had with her, we have made progress on our journey together.  I do (in some ways) understand where she came from and why she is here.  When she really takes over my life and gets all up in my grill, I can sometimes remember that everything she says isn't true and that eventually, if I hold my ground, she'll retreat.   

Stepping out of my metaphor for a moment, I know cognitively that this is all a matter of neurological programming.  I know that my brain has laid a lot of "tracks" for her existence and that with time, patience, discipline, continued effort and practice, that these "tracks" can be rewritten.  That they are being rewritten, even right now as I write this.

But FUCK is it slow.  And sometimes I just feel so fucking tired of her.   

Anyway, thanks for listening.  I'm off to make some healthy choices and keep fighting the good fight. 

Oh, and happy 3 weeks if you're doing the challenge!

Day 16 - #365MeditationChallenge

I did a 20 minute meditation today and I spent the first 15 minutes with that "wall" I spoke about yesterday.  As I allude to in the video, I felt like one of those pantomimes putting my hands up and down this invisible wall in my consciousness.   

And then, all of a sudden I got a very clear vision of a bridge.  The bridge looked as though it had been blown up and I was standing on the edge of it looking down into an abyss.... just nothing.  I couldn't see over to the other side because it was all misty.   

I get it.   

All of a sudden I can see neuron cells in my brain making new pathways... to the unknown.  I have literally never been here before.  It is a new frontier.  It is a new way of thinking and being.  I am becoming.  

And holy CRAP does the notion of this make me excited.   

Lately I have been doing some reading about mental health and chronic conditions and decided that it is very likely that I literally have brain damage/trauma that has resulted in a whole host of undesirable symptoms (depression being first and foremost).  I am PASSIONATE about creating new brain circuits that are healthy and NOT of the variety that spin me into this old story of depression.  

I have been working on it for years and, although I do feel like I'm making progress overall, it's slow.   

It is a daily journey to re-write your programming.   

But the image of this bridge is exciting!  I feel like it means that, through meditation and the time that I am putting into this very deliberate, intentional box, I am finally going to create something new.   

This makes me feel PUMPED.