Quiet Mind

I sit in a room with my legs crossed and my hands on my knees. I’m focused on my breath, trying hard to ignore my racing thoughts. The music is relaxing and the yoga teacher is the only one who is speaking. Her presence is calming and trusting. I feel safe. I’m trying to get my mind to feel the same. Halfway through the class, my thoughts halt. I’m left with a quiet mind. It’s a very rare experience for me. After yoga, my mind remains quiet. Everything that captured my attention before class quickly washes away. My mind isn’t rushing or holding onto burdening thoughts. I’m present, I’m relaxed, I’m quiet. I don’t speak. I sit on my bed with a heating pad on my shoulder, taking refugee in these rare moments of solace within myself.

Disappeared

It’s clear to me that seasons no longer exist. They only exist as dates on a calendar, marking the passage of time. The rest has faded away to a time and place the planet no longer knows. We’ve had at least five major snow storms in the last two months. It’s autumn, where leaves are supposed to be falling. Normally, snow begins around the middle of November. But this year, expectations for normalcy have disappeared. We’re left with feet of snow as colored leaves dangle from frozen trees.

The Case of Misunderstanding

The intention of the message is lost,
causing both sides to bicker and banter.
Perspective impacts opinion and causes
emotions to cloud one's judgment.

Person one says something to person two.
Person two takes what person one said to heart
and accuses person one of meaning something
they didn't because the communication wasn't clear.

This causes both parties to escalate their stances,
which leads to getting outside parties involved
because the communication is seemingly too messy
for either party to resolve the issue on their own.

Outsiders don't know the full story,
and often their biases show
who they're for and who they're against
within moments of hearing one perspective.

It's a case of misunderstanding,
when someone's been hurt too many times,
they can't speak without pain being present,
which causes nothing to be solved.

A Reminder to Be Respectful

I don't have to agree with you to respect you.
You don't have to agree with me to respect me.

We can come from two different backgrounds and generations,
have different perspectives, beliefs, and ideas,
and still, be respectful of one another.

The focus is often on what is different about us,
who we love, what we believe, where we live.
While we may have moral differences that define us,
that doesn't mean we can't be kind, or at least civil.

We can get our messages across without yelling at each other.
It's possible to agree to disagree and not be hateful.

Call out injustices that need to be addressed,
make noise when something needs to be changed.
But don't be rude to someone who doesn't agree with you
and don't try to put your beliefs on them.

The goal shouldn't be to get someone
to believe what you believe because it doesn't work.
Repetitive behavior with the same speech
isn't productive or convincing.

It's to be kind to each other regardless of where we stand.
I'm not the bad guy and neither are you.

Saturday Drive

I go on a drive looking for my old self.
I listen to old music and sing along. Dixie Chicks and Bob Dylan,
Songs from my childhood that have bled into my young adult years.
The leaves have barely changed
As the season of summer is about to leave for the year.
Saturday, 79 degrees, and endless blue skies
Guide my way as I drive a route
I once swore I'd never return to.
Too many loops, too scary, too many unknowns.
This is my second time on this road this month
I got lost the first time and made the experience less than thrilling,
Trying to navigate a road by memory without second guessing
Myself takes serious concentration.
Now, I'm going back and forth up a hill,
Reminding myself that this is where I first felt car sickness.
I didn't find my old self, she's no longer around.
Instead, I was reminded of how much I've grown
Since I've been on this road and how much
I'm still scared of the great unknown.

Toothache

Lower left side of my mouth,

right if I’m staring into a mirror.

 

It’s all in my head,

it only aches when I’m out of ideas.

 

When I’m writing, reading, watching tv, or eating,

there’s no pain.

 

None.

As if I’m in a bad dream.

 

But I’m awake because I can feel

my teeth clenching.

 

Weirdest sensation.

As if it’s telling me to be productive

 

instead of wasting the day

procrastinating.