Intentions and Enlightenment

I am not a fan of resolutions. The last time I made one was in the early 2000’s. I had just moved back to Illinois, back in to my parents home to help take care of my Mom. I resolved to learn how to speak Italian. I bought all of the CD’s and set out on a quest to learn how to speak a foreign language I knew nothing about. I had only taken French in High School and I could count to ten in French, say, “my name is” in French and that was about the extent of it. Needless to say, I failed this resolution in a grand way. I didn’t understand it, it was very hard for me and I quit. I am a big fan of quitting, so it was not the quitting that bothered me per se. It was that I swore this was something I REALLY REALLY REALLY wanted to do and if you know me, well you know I usually see those things through to fruition. That being said, I did not see this one through. It didn’t end with the same fiery passion that it began. It kind of just fizzled out and died like the campfire you pretty much put completely out at the campsite but still has some smoking embers. It has always been with me, to this day I still wish I knew how to speak it, I just don’t know that it is at the top of the list of things I must do before I perish from this Earth. From the moment this resolution died though, I have never had another one. Not ever. They set us up for major failure and we have enough of that in our minds as it is.

That being said, this year I am trying intentions. Saying I intend to do something sounds much less intimidating than I resolve to do something. I intend to eat more vegetables. I really suck at it. And not because I don’t like vegetables, I do. I just would rather eat fruit. I intend to get more sleep. I intend to move my body more. The list goes on. Those are great. I feel safe in those intentions, comfortable even. Just because I intend to, doesn’t mean I will always do it. Knowing I intend to is enough for me.

One of my intentions was to meditate more. There is powerful scientific proof that meditation is overwhelmingly beneficial for us in so many ways. Never has it been more important in our lives than right now with the state of the world. I intend to meditate more because I need to be grounded. More rooted in my center and core and integrity. I took major, massive, colossal leaps of faith last year leaving a job and a company that no longer served me. I have never once regretted or challenged that decision. I listened to my inner wisdom and I followed my heart. The problem is it is a full time job to do that. It takes practice. It takes patience. It takes time. And it takes reaching that little girl who existed before the world told her who she was supposed to be. The only way I can reach her is to meditate. To drown out the noise. To shut off the static. For the record, I am a HORRIBLE meditator. But I know I won’t be forever. I am a horrible meditator because when I do it, within seconds I am thinking about what I need at the store. Is the laundry done? Do the children have gas in their car? What is for dinner? The list goes on. It takes work to focus on the breathing. It takes work to pull yourself back to you and listen to the silence.

Something happened today when I meditated that I felt a moral obligation to share. As the teacher was reminding me to focus on my breathing and how to pull myself back to the breath and to count my inhales and exhales my entire body became covered in goosebumps. I felt a presence but knew that I was physically alone. I immediately began crying, but not streaming tears, just eyes full of tears. A very, very little girl inside me said, and out loud I might add, “Mom?” And a part of me wanted to open my eyes to see if she was there but another part of me knew if I opened my eyes that this moment, this connection, this feeling would disappear. And the little girl inside me took over and told me to open them. And then I started crying harder because I knew that she would not be there, but I also knew that I had to check to be sure. The point is that I honored the little girl by opening my eyes. She was not there. But my God the feeling of her was. Her essence. Her very being was as close to me as I have felt since two weeks before she died. The tears never streamed down my face, they sat in my eyes collecting. Almost as if to say, if we fall out, so will all of the memories.

I don’t know how people feel about enlightenment. Enlightenment in simplest terms is the state of having knowledge or understanding. Some people meditate for years to find that moment. That space in time. That knowledge and understanding. It took me less than 5 minutes. I firmly believe I reached this because I set my intentions and I honored the little girl who wanted them in the first place. I have no earthly idea if I will ever feel that moment, that powerful passing of energy when I meditate again but I do know that what we put out into the universe, we will get back, sometimes tenfold. I would have given ANYTHING for her to have been there when I opened my eyes, and the reality is she was. Just not in a window pane I could see her in. I could see her in my heart and feel her in my breath and see her on my skin. Something I could not have understood had I not been meditating.

I don’t know what any of my future meditations will bring, I just know that this one changed me profoundly. I can still conjure the feelings and emotions associated with it. And I know if I believe in my heart that that is how I can connect with her, that you will probably find me meditating ALL. THE. TIME.

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