Sometimes, isn’t life just excruciating? I mean, on a very simple level, for example, as I type this on my new laptop, I will be typing away and suddenly realise that the cursor has magically jumped back seven words and is typing into another sentence and I have to delete it all and start all over again and the sentence looks like this: I amcursor keeps moving aroc trykeepursor und and its inf ing infuriating cursoruriating. trying to type a sentence but thefuriating cursin…….
Or in the same vein, you will be trying to reset a password and all occasions do inform against you…. you get locked out, the password expires and you have to start again, then the electricity blows or something and all this while you try to remain mindful …..
Or when you type a massive bit in an important essay and BECAUSE YOU STARE AT THE KEYBOARD WHILE TYPING YOU DON’T SEE UNTIL WAY TOO LATE, THAT it’s all in caps lock, and you should know the tool to reverse it, but you just retype it anyway because YOU’RE NOT SURE HOW TO actually do it …(misery emoji).
Or you, for example, carefully keep some free bowling vouchers- (which are plain white receipt style), in a safe place and then, when you next look, the shiny attractive envelope is there, all pristine and pink and with a picture of children having fun bowling (for free), but the free bowling vouchers are not and you get a vague recollection of picking up some random receipts from the floor at some point and stuffing them- slightly rebelliously -into the food recycling bin- along with gone off eggs you cracked into a banana cake butter and sugar batter you lovingly beat with your child in an attempt to get him off youtube and that you had been going to bake, but which you threw away because the egg yolk and albumen were grey and loose (and fell like grey water) when you cracked them (though in date) into the light and fluffy pale yellow batter (the last of these two ingredients in the house) and made you retch for at least three days just thinking about them. You also can’t retrieve the receipts because they are covered also in bits of black avocado flesh from the avocado (in date) that you’d hoped to have on toast for breakfast, and slops of porridge. And that’s just a theory anyway, they could be anywhere, because you tied up that sack of shit earlier with all its eggy juices and carried it like a baby still in its amniotic sack to the filthy food recycling bin outside anyway and simply will not go and untie that sad misery now because its just too plain undoable.
Most ANNOYinglu annoyinglu annoyingly yesterannoyingday (that kind of thing), you planned to write what you felt was going to be a really interesting blog about AKATHISIA (a deep inner restlessness some people get when taking anti depressants) , or about Paying It Forward after you paid for someone to take a bus when they were in danger of getting thrown off by a mean bus driver when they couldn’t find their bus pass and which made you feel like an extra specially nice human being even though they didn’t really say Thank you that much, or about Tara Brach’s RAIN method, or something really new and sparkly and radical and/or soothing… but all you manage to drag up out of the pit of your feet is a crap pile of misery about stubbing your toe on the way to the bathroom; collapsing in a human star shape (face down on the floor) when you’d been attempting a simple downward dog; spilling milk down the side of the cooker and into the cutlery drawer after you’d recently cleaned it thoroughly; or trying to work out how to resolve a seemingly unresolvable relationship in which three children are involved and you have absolutely no idea how it can improve or change without divine intervention.
And even as you try to depict it, you become painfully aware of how hard it is to translate much in writing and how difficult it is to come up with a decent idea for anything at all, never mind a great blog post. Thomas Hardy springs to mind; I bet he’d know what to write and how to write it. thironiese little (yep, THIS laPTOP) The little ironies of life, he’d have a field day.
RAIN. In the most ugly moments of the soul; when you are simply going about your day and suddenly get struck with some painful emotion or distorted reaction or horrible feeling generally, the beautiful Tara Brach, really can soothe your soul with her self compassion technique called RAIN (and just generally -she emanates and oozes peaceful lovliness). And RAIN works well with authentic sadness and strong meaningful questions about stufffff, but in todays version it’s as follows:
R: Recognise: I feel like shit right now. everything feels wrong and my laptop is a pile of shit.
A: Allow: Your laptop is shit, you are deeply ungrateful. you stubbed your toe again, spilt milk in the cutlery etc, threw away free bowling vouchers by mistake, ruined a good batter with gone off eggs and opened an avocado to see mostly dark green and black muck etc – it feels like the universe is laughing at you, really loudly.
I: Investigate: You were very kindly given a budget laptop for your birthday (while you’d been spending months researching the one you wanted which was pretty good). You are grateful, but also a bit ungrateful, therefore guilty and confused by your total lack of grace and genuine gratefulness. Your toe feels broken and you need to clean out the milk and all the stuff in the cutlery drawer and pull out the oven and clean all crevices to avoid cheesy, stinky congealed and semi solid puddles pooling under the oven over the next couple of days. You feel itchy, scratchy and generally pants… You can’t eat/handle eggs for at least a year and you feel ripped off by Iceland (the supermarket) where you bought your damned Avocado.
N: Nurture: With your hand over your heart or on your cheek: say (YES) my darling, I feel your pain. It’s shite, total shite. You’ve had a pants day and your laptop is pretty frustrating. At least you tried to make a cake. Go vegan! I love you!
After the rain: Beautiful Tara Brach recommends bathing in the peaceful replenishing newness of the moment after giving yourself the time and compassion to hear yourself and comfort yourself. No matter how big or small the complaint. Hear yourself out.
Check her out, she’s amazing.