Since my Irish adventure in Ennis – about 9 weeks ago- I’ve been walking around with a vicious tendinitis in my ankle. Short distances I can easily hobble and dodder, but during a visit to the zoo, two crutches are my best friends. Besides many concerned questions from people around me but also fantastic helpfulness from amusementpark – and zoo personell, there really is something more positive in it for me:
I’m being forced to slow down. Litterally take it step by step.
Haste doesn’t exist anymore. Before I undertake anything, I breathe deeply. Is it nescessary to do? Should it be done now? When I go up the stairs, I make sure I do everything that needs to be done upstairs, to make sure I don’t have to stumble up again. My life is getting more simple, efficient. It turns out not to be all that hard to weave this litteral slowdown into my daily way in a figurative sense.
Meditating for 40 minutes every morning is a great way to start the day. Every morning I wake up at 6:00, even when I went to bed at 2am the night before. Tiredness makes place for clarity and peace. Step by step. When I see something beautiful, like the scene above, I have time now more than ever to stop and see. Less and less I am distracted by thoughts and the tunnelvision that, in our society, often is mixed up with purposefulness and concentration, more and more I can just see…
Yes, it’s painful. I’m forced in an uncomfortable way, to be very aware of every step I take. Is it a bad thing? No.
It’s a blessing, this tendinitis. Time and again, every step shakes me out of the stupor that has become our human way. Every step reminds me that I’m alive here and now. That there’s no other place to be, not any other thing to do but this. Now.
While the days finally grow colder, the sun floats low and treats me to jewels of light, long, thoughtful shadows and impressive cloudy landscapes, and I realize that this clear blue sky from the picture is always and everywhere. With my painful ankle in the clouds, my thoughts slowly and lightly stretch out over the earth between the cornstubs. And while I take the picture and the virgin fall freshly tickles my lungs, just for a moment, time withdraws itself.