Today was a hard day. I had nightmares last night. People are getting sick with covid in meat packing plants and there are concerns that there will be food shortages. People everywhere have been struggling to access toilet paper, then cleaning supplies, and now possibly meat and other food products. The toilet paper did not bother me. Our family started out strong because I had gone to Costco and stocked up in December. Every time I go to the grocery store, which is not often now, I look for a package to take home. So, we have been able to maintain our supply. Cleaning supplies last for a long time and those do not worry me. If I look for what I need when I do make it to the store, I am generally able to find something. But food….|
I have been lucky throughout my life. My family was not rich, but we never went hungry. Even at the poorest times of my life as an adult food was top priority. If there were a choice between paying rent or buying food, I would choose food. Food has been a comfort to me. It has been the one thing I control in my life even when everything else felt chaotic. Something I love doing, shopping at the grocery store, is now something I dread. I feel uncomfortable and unsafe there. The usual security of knowing that everything I want to buy is available has come into question. I know I have been privileged in the past with my access to so many choices. It feels scary to lose access to those choices.
My entire outdoor experience right now has been at the grocery store. It has become the measure of all outdoor activity. Otherwise I am at home. My husband can work from home and my son’s schooling is being provided by distance learning. I know out of all the people going through this virus our family is lucky. Yet, I am someone who likes stability and consistency. This virus has taken the security of knowing what to expect. It has taken the ability to predict what can happen within the next day, the next week, and the next year. It is uncomfortable and I find myself wanting to go back to a place of knowing. Perhaps this is an opportunity, however. It is an opportunity to be with each moment. God is in the present. She is in the Now. A few years ago, I had a goal of being present in each moment. I had just read Eckhart Tolle’s The Power of Now and it opened my mind to the idea of living in each moment. It was exciting to think of always being present. I also discovered it is not that easy. After a few moments of mastering mindfulness my mind would wander until I realized I had lost attention. It is a constant practice of refocusing attention. It is hard, yet meaningful work.
When I was introduced to mindfulness meditation several years ago, I could feel God there in the meditation. I felt closer to Her than I ever had before. I discovered God is in the present. In the Bible the name of God can be translated as I am Who I am. God’s name is not I was Who I was, or I will be Who I will be. God is in the now. Perhaps the comfort is that God is with us in each moment. Because this present time is a period of mourning, a period of waiting, a period of tragedy, and a period of struggle. It is a not a comfortable place to be for any of us although some people are having an easier time than others. The thing we all have in common is that we cannot know what our world will look like in a week, a month, or a year. We are forced to be present in the moment because there is no other place to be. We are not alone there though. That is where we will meet the Divine. She will walk with us through the struggle, the grief, and all the myriad of feelings that appear. She is our hope.
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