“Simple things become complicated when you expect too much.”
Birth of Awareness
This week marks 31 years since my extraordinary daughter was born. However, she was not due for another two weeks, a date I had etched into my brain and had joyfully anticipated (along with some fear and nervousness) for nine months. I had read all the books and taken the classes, and I knew what to do when my water broke and when the labor pains could be timed at specific intervals.
I had one more doctor appointment to go before the long-awaited due date. The evening before that appointment, I felt a weird pain in my lower back. As the night wore on, the pain became more intense. My whole body felt uncomfortable in ways I hadn’t felt before or recalled reading about. I held off as long as I could figuring I’d see the doc in the morning, but finally we decided to call him. He asked a few questions and suggested we meet at the hospital just to be sure. I took a shower and we headed over. The pain had not diminished and was now accompanied by intense nausea and worse.
Imagine my surprise (and theirs) when they told me I was in the final stages of labor, too late for an epidural or anything else, and raced me off to the delivery room. Within two hours, a star was born.
So what was that? The byproduct of years of reality-avoidance? A refusal/inability to see the writing on the wall? A form of denial, not trusting or even sensing my intuition?
Many times in the years since that life-changing day, I have asked myself “Lena, what in the world did you think was happening???” Looking back, it seems pretty obvious. But the experience I was having didn’t look, feel, or seem like the experience I was expecting. I was so locked into “labor” being a certain way, I had no ability to think outside the box.
Same thing years later when my partying/socializing/coping mechanism gave birth to alcoholism. I never chugged half-pint bottles in brown paper bags with my arm wrapped around a lamppost in the middle of the night. (Old movies and family photo albums were my frame of reference, I guess.)
Today, I practice keeping an open mind, being honest with myself as best as possible, and not being attached to specific outcomes. I no longer want to miss the gift of the present moment waiting for a preconceived moment that may never come.
Thank you Karen for our conversation that led to this memory and the chance to receive the wisdom of the hindsight.
Have you ever missed seeing the forest for the trees, or the tree for the forest?
How do you keep yourself open to the present moment experience?
Can you recall a time you were in complete denial of something that actually was quite obvious?
In gratitude, harmony, and support,