Tuesday, March 18, 2014

                                                NOW I LAY ME DOWN TO. . .

     Now I lay me down to wake. Yup. Not sleep--wake. At my first Mindfulness class yesterday, I learned how to try NOT to sleep. This somehow goes against what my mind and body seem to crave of late. The point is to relax and focus in a wakened state. I asked myself, sitting there, eyes fluttering, whether this means I should meditate AND take the nap everyday, or will the meditation replace the nap. (This did not sound appealing, as I love cuddling up under the blanky at 4:00 p.m. after reading two paragraphs of my novel and falling into a deep coma for an hour.) I am curious about this meditation thing, though, so I try listening attentively.

     We begin by holding one tiny raisin in our hands. Never did I picture myself sitting in a room full of 78 white hairs holding a small red blob in my palm. The image is laughable, n’est-ce pas? Anyway, the absolutely hot PhD from the local university instructs us to listen to the Mindfulness guru  who will lead us through the first of two meditations. This one is to last 18 minutes. I look at the tiny raisin in my hand, holding back giggles, as I look around at all 78 of us doing the same thing not knowing what to expect. The meditation begins. Guru tells gurees? to examine said raisin--”focus on the size, the edges, the color, the weight” of this tiny gem. I’m starving, and all I can think of is how I can subtly grab the plate behind me with the remaining ones on it and stuff them in my piehole--wrinkles and all (not wrinkles in my piehole--you get the gist). I refrain and continue listening to the instructions. I’m really focused on this raisin, so much so that I begin falling into a wakeful slumber. My hand starts to feel weak under the weight of the fruit, and I have to support it on my lap. Finally, after much “focusing,” he tells us to slowly bring it to our lips. OHNO! I put it in my mouth already. Strike one for moi. It wanted in, I know it did. We are told not to be “judgmental” about our raisin or our behavior, so I block out the “You doofus--you weren’t supposed to put it in your mouth yet!” inner voice already chiding me. We continued to focus on the raisin once it was on our tongues. I did that for about one second, and then, I couldn’t help myself--down it went into my gullet. “OH NO! I wasn’t supposed to swallow yet.” Strike two. “Who cares?” I thought. Are they going to write on my tombstone, “the bitch swallowed her raisin too soon?” Anyway, 18 minutes later, I was in a sound slumber. Not good. We were supposed to stay awake. I was fed and rested--it was all good to me.
     After the second meditation that was focused on breathing, I decided that this whole mindfulness thing is a conspiracy to prevent me from napping. Then it dawned on me. I was really learning how to get TWO naps instead of one--one nap awake and one nap asleep. It’s all good. Can’t wait until next week. Hope we can focus on a Twinkie.