My therapist has asked me to try and practice mindfulness as a way to reduce anxiety. It’s a way of focusing just on what you’re doing at that moment – eating, showering, relaxing, whatever – instead of letting your mind race and worry about the million other things you need to do. I was in need of a break a few minutes ago, but still couldn’t turn my mind off, so I decided to write down everything I was hearing and seeing to reduce my stress. It seemed to work. Here are my stream of consciousness ramblings:
I hear the sound of an insect, maybe a cricket, chirping in the distance. The sun is out. I hear the gentle rush of cars on the nearby road. The bright pink flowers on the bushes stir gently, bowing to their fallen petals. I am alone, but not alone. Quiet and waiting for the tightness in my chest to ease. I have to focus, and the pressure on my brain will release. Focus, focus. Let life go for a few minutes. All that exists are wind, flowers, crickets, and sun. I want to live.
A bird calls, as though it wants me to answer. There is no response. Maybe it wants a mate, or is searching for its lost flock. I’ll send up a prayer for it. One for the lost bird. One for me. Now I’m ready. Press play.