Well, what a crazy time we are in. I have been on a medical leave (had a hip replacement) for the last 5 weeks and as I’m “returning to work” (much of which is on hold) and deciding on my next blog/newsletter topic, I’m conflicted about what to write. Should I write about Wellness and keeping our immune systems strong? Should I write about what I know about the Coronavirus? But no, I’ve decided to just write from the heart. This is such a confusing time (none of us has experienced anything like this coronavirus pandemic). Under the best of circumstances, it is stressful and confusing. What are the rules? How do we protect our loved ones? How do we stay sane? And if your circumstances are already compromised (i.e. recovering from major surgery, suffering an illness, have a loved one who is compromised etc.) it can be extra stressful. What do they mean, we “aren’t allowed to get together with friends and neighbors”?? That’s one of the main ways I handle stress…not fair!! What do you mean you are cancelling my post-op visit for my hip surgery…how will I know my hip is healing ok? This is outrageous! What…I can’t go visit my mother-in-law in her retirement community?? But she’s all alone! These and many other types of thoughts are swirling in my mind, as I’m sure they are in yours as well. What to do?
I have been practicing Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction for the last few years and I find myself really turning to it now. To sum up the practice of Mindfulness in one sentence, it's staying present to all of your thoughts, feelings and physical sensations with Compassion, Curiosity and NO JUDGEMENT. The more we can be aware of what we are feeling and how we are reacting to things, while having compassion for ourselves, the better we will be able to respond. For me, having curiosity about what I’m thinking and feeling usually leads me to the Serenity Prayer (God, grant me the Serenity to Accept the things I cannot change, the Courage to change the things I can and the Wisdom to know the difference). For example, when I’m feeling frustrated about not being able to get together with friends (one of my stress relievers), my curiosity about the frustration leads me to acceptance that I’m not going to be going to any of the gatherings on the calendar for March into April (including probably Passover and Easter celebrations). The curiosity also leads me to find the courage to do something different which for me has been doing some Zoom gatherings with people. I needed courage for this because technology can be challenging for me and I often shy away from it but I’m summoning the courage to try and it’s worked out really well so far!!! A little Wisdom is showing it’s face!! I think there are going to be some Silver Linings to this crisis, including the opportunity to deepen our spiritual practices and grow our Wisdom.
In closing, I want to say to you all that I AM HERE FOR YOU! I always offer free, 30 minute Wellness Consults, to chat with people about resources to improve their health and wellness. I want to extend that to all of you now!! If anyone wants to talk, about their health, about Mindfulness practice, about their fears about the situation we are in or about anything else, please reach out to me here and we can set up a free phone call or face time or even Zoom. I’m not looking for Clients right now, just want to connect!! Love, Coach Kira