I had a tough day last week. For a variety of reasons, a few things hit me hard – way hard – and I went down. Down as in not being okay with my present moment, and down as in so much from the past I experienced hurting in ways it doesn’t often do.

The more I tried to work my way out, the further down I went. The more I needed support and love from outside of me so that I could feel better, the further down I went. The more I tried to seem okay (I was, of course, in a small crowd of people) even though I wasn’t, the further down I went.

I hit my darkness. I stayed there for a bit. I allowed myself to cry and sob and hurt. A lot.

Then I remembered that I had a choice. I remembered the saying I first heard in Al-Anon decades ago, “Move a muscle; change a thought.” I remembered that I, almost always if not always, know how to take care of myself and that I, almost always if not always, am the main source of love and support that I need.

I picked myself up, excused myself from the small crowd, and went for a walk on the beach.

(Yes, I do know how outrageously lucky I was to be near a beach. Especially for me, as the sand and sea combination is my most soothing place.)

Then, if I were to be honest, I picked myself up from the beach and went for a walk along the streets, because I am a city-kid, and the beach, alone, at night, in the dark was soothing and also way, way, way freaky for me.

I did what I could do right then to ease.

Whether it’s a walk to the beach or my hand on my heart. Whether it’s the parasympathetic nervous system activating breathing that I’m practicing now (breathe in through the nose for a count of four and out through the nose for a count of eight…it’s amazing!) or looking up to see the trees against the sky. Whether it’s thinking about my yellow birds or noticing the flock of bright green parrots that live near that beach. Whether it’s actively opening my hands in a gesture of letting go to the universe or remembering that right here, right now I am actually okay.

All of these are things I can do right in the moment – right now – to ease.

I breathe. I shower myself with love and self-compassion beyond measure. I let the light and love of the universe flow in me and the light and love in me flow through me.

That’s a bit of what I can do right now to ease.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

Photo by Alyssa Sieb on nappy

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