“I took a deep breath and listened to the old brag of my heart. I am, I am, I am.” ~Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
The stresses of life pile up from time to time. These last few weeks were a little rocky. Stress at work. Apartment issues. The nerves associated with putting on a live show in New York City on a cold Monday night in January. A really not-great date. Not enough time to write. One afternoon, I was sitting with all of that and I realized I was holding my breath. This is what I do with stress. I get very still. I get quiet. I hold. I wait.
I’ve found that the breath is the beginning and end of everything for me. A thought. A feeling. An action. A reaction. If I can get my breath moving, my spirit comes back to life. Then the mind. Then the body. And if I can keep the breath going, these pieces of me begin to work together. It’s a slow but reliable process.
Sometimes breathing moment to moment is what I can do. Sometimes it’s all I can do. And that’s enough. That’s the seed where solutions begin. And I always have access to it. It’s always an option, and so I take it.