Monday, January 12, 2009

Welcoming in the new year with a completely new way of being.

All I can say is WOW. What a journey this life is.

Since last writing in September I feel as though I have been so busy that I have not had a moment to even think. However during this same time my life has transformed in ways I could only have imagined and did imagine for years. I believe the most significant change came when I was most needy and ready to receive.

For myself, I feel as though the "crisis" is finally over and I have never, since being a little girl, felt so at peace. Now I know you are saying, "Please Lisa tell us what has caused this grand transformation? Share with us your insight. Give us some hope."

And so I shall.

It all began or ended in late October. The anniversary of my son's heart attack sent me right over the edge. I just could not stop thinking about how this could have happened in his life. Why his heart? Why him? Yada yada yada. I was doing all I could to Surrender these thoughts but just felt stuck within them despite all my knowledge about how to do this. At the same time I was teaching a class called 60 Days to Surrender Success and it was helping me to stay afloat just above the surface. As the days of October went by I could not find a chance to see my son and I needed to see him, feel his strong hug and confirm to myself that he was really doing as well as he told me he was. But days and weeks went by and we could just not get our schedules
to connect.

As I continued to despair I finally knew I needed to take some more action so I sought out a therapist, acupuncture and some Bach Flower essence to help me through this time.

I began in earnest using all of these therapies and felt that I was at the very least taking some action that would hopefully help me change the way I was thinking. My therapist was lovely and sweet, certainly concerned with how I was feeling and mentioned that she thought I was suffering Post Traumatic Stress. That felt OK, but it did not address how I was to manage these thoughts. On the way home from my second appointment with her I stopped at the local library and went to the self-help section. My eyes stopped on a title Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life and I pulled it from the shelf. I had read this book at another time and it did not resonate with me, but I put it in my bag and checked it out along with another book by Byron Katie A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are

I began to read the book that night and it made sense to me. My mind had been lost and focused in the negative happenings in Quinn's life instead of focused on the great achievements he has made. What is it about the mind that tends to focus on the negative and fear and looks at the positive and just run of the mill as not as significant as the so called negative? My son's life had been filled with great achievements and he had time and again taken any negative moments and dealt with them with honor, dignity and courage. What I came to realize is that it was not the negative moments, the real factual moments of his life that stressed me. It was the story I was telling about them and the meaning I was giving to them that caused me the intense stress. This was a revelation!

But the lesson was not complete. I guess Spirit decided I needed a little reinforcement to really force this new way of thinking into my head. It was November 2, the day before the election and I finally was able to see Quinn. He came to my house to pick up some of his army gear to add to a survival/emergency kit he was making. I strolled out with him to our barn where he had stored boxes of gear that he had bought while in the military. I watched him go through this stuff with awe and disbelief. He had Ghillie suits and HAZMAT gear. He pulled out an Afghan hat that he told me he used when he was "undercover" in Afghanistan. He had medical equipment and books on survival. It went on and on and the whole time he regaled me with stories of his experiences and why and how each piece of equipment was used.

He came in the house and sat with me for over an hour, we laughed and spent the time I needed to see that, yes he really was doing great. Later on that evening I went to bed and pulled the other book by Byron Katie A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are and started to read. The significance of what I read will stay with me forever along with the way God chose to drill these new thoughts into my mind and brain. I skimmed through the book to see if anything felt relevant to me and there was a dialog with a women who feared for her adult children's lives. She had no real reason to have these feeling, but they were with her none the less.

Katie started "The Work" on her. The Work consists of asking yourself four questions to any negative thought or feeling you are having.

1) Is it true?

2) Can you absolutely know that it is true?

3) How do you feel when you think that thought?

4) What would your life be like without that thought?

As Katie dialoged with this women much if not all of what she was feeling about her children reflected my own thoughts. It was as if I was listening to myself. I could have spoken the same words. Finally Katie says to her," So you are afraid your children do not have the survival skills to live" and in that moment I started to laugh. I laughed until I cried. I laughed for so long, my husband thought I was going nuts. Every time I stopped laughing the words," So you are afraid your children do not have the survival skills to live" would pop in my head and I would begin to laugh again.

Why was I finding this so funny? Because I have a son who has more survival skills than anyone I know. I mean this child has true survival skills and has survived circumstances that I can't even begin to imagine. At 24 years of age, it is safe to say he has seen more and done more than anyone else I know. What the heck was I doing worrying about him?

One other piece of what Katie wrote about clinched a forever change of mind for me. She says there are three kinds of business.

My business.

Your business.

God's business.

She further says that the only business anyone should worry or care about is your own business. God's business were things like natural disasters and health and death worries. There it was, the evidence I needed to stop my constant worry about my son's health. It was not my business. I was in God's business and Quinn's business. He was an adult and had manage to survive oh so much, from boot camp to airborne school to ranger training. He had survived a 10 month tour in Afghanistan as part of a scout/sniper team. He had survived a 50 foot fall out of a helicopter and his body temperature falling to 93 degrees and developing hypothermia. He had survived a tour with Special Ops in Iraq going door to door looking for hostages during the time when Iraq was having their first free election since our takeover. And most recently he had survived a massive heart attack. This child is a survivor! Pure and simple!

It has now been over 2 months since these revelations and a change in my thought process and I am pleased to say that the peace has stayed with me throughout.

If you would like to join me in doing the work, there is a link in the right hand side bar. Sometimes a change in thinking just clicks as it did for me. Who knows maybe The Work will click for you.

1 comment:

Jess Steinman said...

Wow Lassie, you really are an inspiration. I was drawn back to your blog after some time, after you mentioned it on Facebook. :)

I think after reading your story here, that it may be time for me to look into "The Work," too. I remember you telling me about in November, but I think at the time I just wasn't ready for it yet. With where I am right now, with the fears around finances that creep up, I let go, then take back, what struck me the most was the phrase loving what is ... because just today I spoke about this with my chiropractor, and with a friend/mentor of mine. And now, here it is for a third time. I think Spirit is trying to tell me something. :) So thank you ... I am going to go check out the link, and perhaps I will visit my library or Barnes and Noble and get the book for myself.

Blessings, gratitude, and much love to you, dear friend ~