February 13, 2009

Filling the Void

Since starting the Buddhist meditation classes with Pauletta Chanco and Rebecca Dixon at Alameda Yoga Station I have been noticing tremendous changes in my interactions - both with myself and others. An interesting occurance happened over the past couple of weeks relating to "tension" I have had, for as long as I can remember, in my stomach, chest and throat. For years it has felt like I'm holding back tears, bottling up emotions.

In our class we've been encouraged to notice where we hold tension and also not to attach too much emotional meaning to those areas. Therapy is all about obsessing over your obsessions. Meditation is about noticing. In this noticing the tension moved away from my throat and my chest and down into my belly. That alone was a relief.

Using my Neuro Linguistic Programming training I have been attempting to describe that tension for myself in terms of shape, form, sound and color. Notice, no emotions in that mix. As I describe the "qualities" of the tension I also breath deeply into the area. Last week suddenly (or maybe it took a long time and I suddenly noticed it) the tension was cut-off. As I sat and meditated and even throughout my day I noticed that my "internal reflexes" would try to find or create that tension when I was in certain situations, but the path was short circuited.

The tension is not fully gone, I notice that it is there when I sit to meditate. Feels like a knot in my belly that I keep breathing into to try and loosen. Something else I noticed this week was that I was eating faster and more aggressively. On Wednesday, following an intense client pitch session and prior to Statistics class I ate two ginormous slices of pizza and instantly had a belly ache for the next three hours. My belly was saying, "notice me." I didn't realize this until yesterday when I had eaten yet another meal at lightening speed. The absence of the tension is creating a void that my mind/body/subconscious (?) wants to fill? So very interesting.