26 Nov

I have lived through another Black Friday successfully. My idea of a perfect black Friday is to not go anywhere, not do anything constructive, and most definitely not buy anything. I don’t go anywhere because large crowds make my anxious. I don’t do anything constructive because usually everything is closed unless it’s shopping related. I don’t buy anything because I’m usually broke and shopping makes me anxious. Add anxious to anxious and you get a high probability of a panic attack. So it’s easier to just stay home and breathe.

This year, I also got to deal with a child who thinks staying up until o’dark thirty is a good thing as long as mom is asleep and doesn’t know. When I woke up and found him STILL awake and on his phone, my first thought was to ground him for life. But I took a breath and realized that wasn’t feasible. So I took his phone away. I was going to take it away for the weekend, but after taking a breath, I knew that wasn’t feasible either. I’d give in by then. So he lost his TV time instead for a day. Much better consequence. He not happy and I’m not happy, but we’re both okay. I call it good.

I learned a long time ago that if you’re doing something hard or frustrating, ‘take a breath’ and I’ve used it ever since. On of the things I learned in rehab was to take a breath before doing anything I questioned whether or not I should be doing, saying, being at or thinking about. And usually if I stop and breathe, the reality of the situation is much more clear and I will make a better decision.

I’m in a meditation group every week and we start every meditation by breathing and concentrating on our breaths. In and out. Slow and steady. It is another way of taking a breath to change your outlook on a situation.

As I have watched all the protesting this fall, I have to stop and take a breath lots. There is so much going on that I don’t understand, can’t begin to understand, and have no idea how to help or fix the problem. But when I stop and breathe, I can usually think of someone to ask questions or something that I can feasibly do to help. Or at least help MY understanding. It won’t always help the people or problem, but it WILL help my reaction to it.

  • Today I’m grateful for pie. Did you not see yesterday? Pie solves everything. Today I’m grateful to remember to stop and breathe when I’m frustrated, angry or upset. Today I’m grateful that breathing can keep me alive and present when situations are out of my control.

Remember to always stop and breathe. Night all. LOVES


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