Thursday, June 05, 2008

Wellness Wednesday on Thursday: Be Here Now

First off, I want to apologize for my ugliness the other night. I definitely needed a time-out and still do. At the same time, I believe those who come by here regularly are owed an explanation.

Some New Age circles recommend something called "a bitch book". That is a place where we purge all of our ugly feelings onto paper without censoring and it is theoretically a way of releasing it.

I'm in favor of that idea... and just for today, I'm using this page as my "bitch book".

A few days ago, I commented on someone else's site that being aware of HALT is important. Hungry, Angry, Tired or Lonely. When we feel any of those things, we're more prone to destructive behavior. For those of us who are addicts, it is our highest point of risk.

Lately, I've been there and it's bleeding into most of my perceptions. While I know enough to recognize that all things are temporary, it doesn't necessarily keep me from reacting.

For one thing, I feel bruised and battered by a barrage of values and a way of life that is meaningless to me - and yet have to at least pretend to relate so that there will be some basis for communication. I don't feel like "educating the masses" all the time. I just want to have a conversation. The cultural dissident me needs to rest sometimes.

I'm hungry for likeminded others, people who understand what I am saying and what I believe without having to laboriously explain it.

I can't even sit down to watch a movie without being pummeled by values that I find repugnant.

I'm constantly hungry. I feel like eating everything in sight. One thing leads to another. Last night, I gave in and had some Ben and Jerry's ice cream.

The lack of likeminded communication also makes me feel lonely. Even though I am now a part of a Theravadin community, there are certain traits and characteristics of that community that are anything but Theravadin. Each day, I talk to at least one person who is all about the personality politics and complaints about lack of recognition. Bloody ego! Ambition. Wanting power over the community. I'm sick of it! What do I have to do? Move to southeast Asia and become a nun? Become a hermit?

And that makes me angry. I'm angry that there seems to be no refuge from it. It's like some viral infection. While I understand that most people have to function within that structure, there should be at least one place where it's left at the door.

It's a never-ending cycle at times.

I'm still tired. The truth is that I've been much sicker than I let on here. It is only today that I've awakened without the constant dull headache and malfunctioning digestive system. My head still hurts in certain places. Parts of my skull apparently got burned, too. (On a purely vain level, that means no hair color. I look like crap!)

Burned.. hell. I wasn't sunburned. I was sun-poisoned. I've really been very, very ill. As one person said, I'm lucky I didn't stroke out. Given another couple of hours, I probably would have.

So.. if I've seemed testy and rather unlikeable lately, that's why. And that's why I've chosen to take a time-out.

It's not because I believe feeling these things is unacceptable. We all feel them - but sometimes the answer, especially after the bitching, is to sit still with it, to let it happen, to let the feelings happen without trying to chase them away. Be here. Be now.

I will be back when I can be a bit more positive, hopefully to share some of what this process is really all about ~ something that will be useful to all of us.

However, it will be from my value system - and I hope someone will understand it - without my having to laboriously explain it.

Hope everyone is well - and I'll see you soon - here or in your comment forums.



slouching mom said...

Thank you for your apology. And take care of yourself while you're on hiatus. It sounds like your new digs should go at least a little ways towards bringing you some peace.

At the very least, there's the serenity that'll come from having that ocean view! :)

Jen of A2eatwrite said...

Feel better. Sun poisoning is like radiation poisoning and takes a while to recover.


I hope your move goes easily and well.

flutter said...

This makes sense to me.

jen said...

Chani, it's so hard to be someplace other than where you are supposed to be - and by that i mean geography and what that simple truth must cost. i am sorry it's been rough going, but your honesty as always is your beacon - sometimes simply letting others know the place we are in, even if it's not the place you want to be, can manifest it's own brightness.

heartinsanfrancisco said...

I hadn't heard of HALT but wish I had sooner because a week ago, I was angry and managed to destroy the right side mirror on my car while exiting the garage.

I didn't drive again until yesterday, not to punish myself but because it worried me that I was so angry.

Strangely, I am also suffering from a form of sun poisoning, but inflicted by a dentist in my mouth.

It is making me quite cranky. I hope you feel better quickly and look forward to your return.

Olivia said...

Thanks, Chani. I wish you much rest and healing. And being present with where you are. And making sense about what all of this is trying to tell you.

I don't know if I've felt like you describe before, but I do know that sometimes I just cannot take people at all---at all---and I withdraw. And if I do it for long enough I'm okay. Really withdraw, as in don't answer the phone or see anyone (I know you have a roommate so that's hard). And it eventually passes. I just needed that alone time to process and to rest from stimulation, which I'm very sensitive to.

Anyway, many blessings and great peace and Presence be with you. I'll look forward to seeing you wherever and however, as always,

Love, O xxoo

Anonymous said...

Hang in there, Chani. I hope your energy starts coming back very soon.

Los Angelista said...

I'll say a prayer for you Chani that you are healed, physically as well as mentally and spiritually. We all need the healing. It is so hard to feel like you're living in a world that is half darkness and half light. It takes a toll for sure. I know I get really irritable at night, usually because of not paying attention to my HALT signs all day long -- and then it builds up in the most unfortunate ways. So, take care of yourself and come back to your site when you're ready.

Ian Lidster said...

I empathize at all levels, and much more than I let on in my blogs, so if you think you don't do good works, darling, you did for me today and gave me a shot I needed. Never refrain from being honest and may you find your haven/heaven within you. God knows, I try every day, one day at a time.

Laurie said...

I have been going through some kind of funk myself, lately. I've been blaming it on weather, anniversaries and stress at work...but maybe it is more than that.

Sunstroke is nothing to take lightly. My mom nearly died from it and the effects of it lingered for a long time.

Take time to heal, we'll be here when you are ready to return.


meno said...

Thank you for the explanation. I wondered what was going on.


Brandi said...

when I found my spiritual community, after years of anger and pain around religion, it was almost too good to be true. I questioned it, I poked and prodded it and when I found flaws...normal, human flaws I said see??? SEE??????

it took awhile to reconcile that within me and I stayed away and reveled in resentment-how could 'they' ruin what was supposed to be my nirvana???

for me it was realizing that me getting on my pedestal and pointing the finger was a protection technique on my part. That's just my experience...

Anonymous said...

You never need to apologize to me for what you post. However, I was worried, so I am glad to see this. And, if you really want to see a post that pisses people off, come by my place tomorrow.

thailandchani said...

Sarah, I am really looking forward to that place. It might take a while because of a waiting list... but every minute of waiting will ultimately be worth it. :)


JenA2, thanks. :) I had no idea how sick I was until I started getting well. !!! :)


Flutter, thanks for the confirmation. :) Sometimes when we're in the middle of something, we can't see it until someone else says it. Meaning.. we question our own perceptions.


Jen1+, thanks. :) I appreciate that you "get it" ~ and, yes, it is always best to be honest. I try to do that but sometimes I don't recognize the warning signs myself until it's too late. Ugh!


Susan, thanks... yes, the anger is what will come up and bite you hardest. And it's so insidious!


Olivia, usually I can deal with people. It's the values and the way of life that seems to get to me. Retreating is the best I can do while I'm here. I find that I need to retreat especially after being bitten hard by it - which it seems lately.


Thank you, De :)


Liz, thanks. :) I suspect most of us don't recognize our HALT signs. That's how we end up in trouble.. and the light/dark thing works especially well for me right now. Usually I can stay at least partially in the light.. but too much.. and it all becomes dark.


Ian, it would be interesting to know about this.. and of course I hope you do blog about it one day.

Is "blogging about it" the proper way to put it? Perhaps I should say "write about it." :)


Laurie, thanks for understanding, too. It gives me hope.. when people do understand it.


Meno, that makes two of us. I was wondering what was going on with me, too! I'm always a bit surprised when I "blow".


Brandi, your point is taken. I know I should be able to tolerate it far better than I do. It's that cultural thing - the extreme difference in values. That bites me in every setting.

Still, I get what you're saying and will keep it in mind.


Emily, I'll be there.. and thanks. :)


we_be_toys said...

No need to apologize for saying what you feel, and you know? We ARE way too caught up in things and status as a society - it seems to take the place of simple pleasures, dulls the need for human interaction, and makes us all less than our potential.

I was really wondering what had happened and knew all was not well, but I had no idea you had taken so ill from that overexposure. That's really scary Chani - please, rest and get well - its a much less sunny world when you are off your kilter.

Sending you cool, rippling healing thoughts from an oasis in my mind.
Love, B

painted maypole said...


wishing you peace and physical wellness....

hele said...

"I feel bruised and battered by a barrage of values and a way of life that is meaningless to me"


Its taken me a long time but I have managed to built up a small circle f people who talk sense. Yet I often just want to head for the Himalayas where I'll probably freeze my but off.

This urge to run away from what life has become is something we share.

Peace and love be with you and I hope you feel less raw soon*

Say It said...

I was wondering what happened. I'm sorry you are dealing with sun poisoning. I've had it, it takes time to recoup.

You make sense to me, I get it. I don't live it, but I do get it, and I wish you nothing but everything you want from your journey. Its your journey and I'm glad for the window into it.

thailandchani said...

B, you have summarized it well. :) I think we all need a refuge from that, some place where we are free from the assault of it. And it IS an assault.

Thanks for the well wishes. I've been spending quite a bit of time in my "secret garden" the past few days, too.


PM, thank you :)


Hele, 'raw' is a good word. :) You really "get" me.


Say It, thank you. :)


Defiantmuse said...

ah, I'm just seeing this now. (I don't use google reader, I like to visit the sites themselves to get the whole feel of it and hadn't been by b/c I thought you were on a break)

so. I was surprised by your post the other day but it seemed familiar to me (like when I had my little time-out recently). I completely understand what you're saying, Chani. But then again I usually do.

Anonymous said...

Like Hele, I have a small group (really small) of like-paradigm minded humans with which to experience this reality.

I don't think geography determines kinship as much (though certain cultures aligning with our own values do increase the likelihood of a felt sense of belonging more than others) as other ineffable and unknown qualities and circumstances, concidences and synchronicities.

I know alone. At core, I'm of the mind many do. I've been wearing it's jacket for over fifty two years and counting and, despite the awareness I might never find its owner and maker, I still scan the hearts and minds of this sea of humanity now and again...hoping.

Yeah, je comprehend.

seventh sister said...

I did not see your comments button on the last post but I wanted to say that Humbolt is friggin' beautiful and I knowo you willl love it there. Everything is so lush and the redwoods are incredible.

crazymumma said...

I just read your last few posts and what I thought was 'she sounds raw, like a snake who has just shed her skin'.

Rest. Recharge.

womaninawindow said...

Funny, isn't it, that even the people with the answers need time to refind the answers within themselves. Certainly not funny haha but interesting. And I have to say a huge Thank you for linking to that video of the doctor and her experience with stroke and soul. I shared it with a friend the other day and we sat there sobbing over the simplicity, the clarity, the difficulty of it all. Thank you...

Anonymous said...

Chani, take care of yourself. That's the first thing. And again, it is YOUR blog. I may not alway align with you on every single idea (although I do on many), but I still value reading them. I like the challenge of it, the chance to consider my own take on things. I hope the respite brings you healing.

Girl on the Run... said...

Wishing I could send you suinshine that wouldn't burn you, happiness beyond belief and a kinship so you never know lonliness ever again!

All the best my dear friend always,

MsLittlePea said...

I must have missed it because I just got caught up and I didn't notice anything negative. As to personal politics, I'm not sure we'll ever find any place where it's not present. It's tiring and easy to get discouraged by it.

(I'm going through a skin issue myself right now. Not sun poisoning but an allergy and the sun had a lot to do with it....I sort of know how you feel. I've been in a downer the past couple days because of my skin and how uncomfortable I am. Then last night, I just decided to laugh at myself. Now I feel better and because of that I think I look better.)

Breathe a little and take care if yourself Chani.

RKK said...

Secret gardens are wonderful places to be. Thank you Chani...

Carla said...

Wow Chani, I had no idea that sunburn / poisoning could have such long lasting affects. I do hope that you are feeling better soon. I somehow missed the negativeness. My life has been way too busy crazy lately, but we all go through these things. You are far more understanding than many and definitely have a heart of pure gold. I hope you find peace.

Suki said...

Wow, Chani, glad you're better. Do take care of yourself, I sure hope the move helps. Are you changing roommates too?

HALT. What a wonderful acronym. I'm definitely feeling the ALT right now, so I'll stop right here and take the bitching where no one gets to hear it :P

Aliki2006 said...

It all makes sense to me, too. I wish you peace and healing and I'll be waiting for you.

Nicole said...

Hi! I like your blog. I'll be back later to read more.

Thanks for the HALT thing. I think that works well for managing depression. In the sense that I find myself feeling sad sometimes, and then realizing that I'm really tired or hungry. I'm going to start running through the letters in my mind to see if I'm really sad or if something else is going on.

Be well!