Part of my creative journey is to jostle habit and consistency. Today’s jostling finds me in a long, narrow room with a tiled beige and white floor. Twelve attendees either sit on individual chairs or two tan sofas, three abreast. I make my way to a sofa and sit between a man with wild, white hair, and a matronly woman with tightly, coiled curls. Stern faces and serious brows abound.
A tall, thin British man stands and welcomes us to meditation class. He is our guide. He begins with a series of breathing exercises. I discover I don’t know how to breathe. Attempting to follow his five short breaths in, hold for five, and breath out for five, I am hopelessly confused and increasingly light-headed. In a decidedly unrelaxed manner, I internally say “screw it” and return to my shallow, constricted breathing.
He gently reminds us to let go any unbidden thoughts as he begins a visualization. In a soothing voice, he describes a white, sandy beach with a glowing sun. The sun’s bright warmth fills my body. My mind glides to the cat’s hairball in the hallway at home. Did anyone clean it up? Definitely let it go.
The instructor continues in his calm voice and asks us to visualize light beaming from our bodies. Suddenly, I hear “Beam me up, Scotty.” Where did that come from? I let it go.
A few more guided imageries ensue and my mind settles. As the class ends, I ‘m not certain if I have received the intended benefit given my wayward thoughts. I look around the room. No more furrowed brows. Faces are softer. Something worked. Maybe I’ll come next week.