Thursday, February 25, 2016

Monkey Mind

Yesterday was the first day in a while that I had 'off'.  I didn't have to be anywhere, or do anything.

So of course I had to DO something.  So I went to this great Button store, and surprisingly I was in and out with the perfect buttons in ten minutes.

It was a beautful sunny day so I suggested to my husband that we head to the beach to have lunch at this lovely restaurant that overlooks the water.

We got a window seat, and we had a delicious lunch.  I was the designated driver (so my hubby could have a cider with his fish and chips) and so we headed back home around four with me in the driver's seat.

I kept feeling that I should be somewhere.  I kept telling myself, that, no, I had a free day.

I sat on the couch, caught up on a couple of episodic firehouse dramas, and worked on the test knit I am knitting.

Still, my mind was relentless.

I know what you are thinking.  That I had indeed forgotten something I was to do, or somewhere I was to be.

But no.  It truly was a free day.

Today I had an appointment at 8 am, and afterwards i decided what I really needed was a couple of hours at my favourite Korean Spa.  I am fighting a cold, and figured all the sweating would be a great idea.

I first went into the Earth room, which is a warm room heated with infrared.  I lay there, happy to be warm and decided to breathe deep, mediate and let the warmth build in me to sweat this damn cold out.

Breathe In.  Breathe Out.  Think of nothing but your breath.....

Hmmm.  I wonder what time it is?

Breathe.

Am I lying too close to the next person?

Breathe.

I am going to stay here at least five minutes.

No I am going to leave when the person beside me leaves.

Breathe.

F It.  I am going to go to the charcoal room, it is too hot in here.

The Charcoal room is a cooler room with Charcoal on the walls and buckets of charcoal set on tables.

Ok, here I go, meditate in this cool room for fifteen minutes.

I wonder why they put the charcoal in that design?

Breathe.  Focus.

I wonder what those women are whispering about?

Ahem.  Ok, monkey mind.....back on track.

I should have brought water with me.

What?

Now I have to go to the bathroom.  I always have to go to the bathroom after I have been in the charcoal room.

Ok,  maybe lying on my side would be better.  No, I know....the Salt room.  Yes I need to go lie on the blankets that are atop the hot rock salt.

Ahhhh..   this is perfect.  I could stay in here forever.

Man, it is so hot in here.  Maybe I could wiggle my sore elbow down into the salt.

Nope.  Too hot.

Ok, clearly time for the hot tub.

Yes the hot tub - I will set the timer for ten minutes, then I will have a scrub.

Wow, my breasts sure look odd the way they float up to the surface.  Really odd - like balloons or something.

At least the jet feels good on my low back.

Ok, I am done - must be almost ten minutes (more like five).

Clearly I need to shower and scrub away all this dead skin with the loofa.

Ya that is good.  Then I will go into the steam room.  That should help my cold.

Lying in the steam room I thought about all the steam room scenes in movies and how you can't see anything except steam.  This room isn't like that.  I wonder why?

I closed my eyes and kept trying to tame the monkey - when I opened my eyes the room was so full of steam I couldn't find the door.  And I forgot I was on the top tier and almost fell as I stepped onto what I thought was the floor but was actually nothing.

Hm?  That isn't safe.

Ok.  Back to the cold shower and then I will air dry in the sauna..

Nice....except now I am sweating, and I just showered, so I should go back to the charcoal room to cool off.

I lay in the charcoal room and started to recite the 23rd Psalm (which I never get in the right order) and so I switched to the Lord's Prayer.  I went back and forth a few times between the two prayers which made me think of a group called New Hope that used to sing a version of the 23rd psalm back in the 70s
.
I hummed it to myself a few times but then my monkey mind headed in a whole other direction so I decided it was time to get dressed and head home.

I had been there trying to relax for ninety minutes.

Now I am home.  I am going to watch some mindless television.

It is called mindless, because it is, but it also fools my monkey mind and allows me a break.

And even if the meditation was a fail, the spa experience wasn't.  My cold feels a bit better, and the heat and salt and charcoal made me feel better inside and out.

And now I can knit.

There is always knitting.

Because counting stitches, and reciting the pattern as I knit calms the monkey mind.

Until it doesn't.

And then my monkey mind convinces me to cast on something else, despite all the unfinished projects still on needles.

What?

I have to finish this post.  The dishes need doing.

After I finish this last row.....

12 comments:

  1. LOL... It's bloody hard work, this relaxing and being mindful and in the moment, isn't it!?! I swear, when we get to heaven, you and I will be binge watching TV while you knit awesome things and I mindlessly knit inexpert squares for crooked blankets. We'll share some treats and vino... we'll laugh our tits off and we won't even have to think about breathing... xxx

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  2. Sounds a great plan. If I promise wine and wool can I come too?

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  3. I'm so bad at days off too! I can never get rid of the feeling that there's something else I'm supposed to do.

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    1. We need to keep practicing til we get better at days off. :)

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  4. What, only 10 minutes in the button shop? It must be an excellently organised and well-stocked shop for you to find what you need so quickly. It take me aaaaages to find the 'right' button; partly because of the lack of specialist stockists, and partly because of my resulting indecision about which is the best 'imperfect' button for my project.

    Your spa commentary was fun to read - a great example of how difficult it can be to quiet the mind in an age of an overstimulated western society. Were you equally amused by your unpredictable mind wanderings? I suppose it was frustrating at the time but don't give up. Meditation takes practice like anything else. The best thing is that you set aside time to put yourself first. Is there any way you can schedule a regular 'day off'? In my diary, I block out 'me time' just like any other appointments. It gives me valuable recovery time and breathing space to keep me going well.

    Keep observing the funny side of life and take care xx

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    1. Yes, this button shop is very well organized and the woman who owns it is very helpful. I usually have many days off, it has just been a busy two weeks. Things should get back to 'normal' lol, soon.

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    2. Now I realise why it has been so busy - busy in a special way! :-)
      Nevertheless it can be a relief to get back to the everyday routine. I hope you can catch your breath soon!

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  5. I seem to suffer from monkey mind too, I never seem to be able to enjoy the moment, as my mind has moved on to other things!
    Glad you enjoyed your day off and got some new buttons too :-)

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  6. I seem to suffer from monkey mind too, I never seem to be able to enjoy the moment, as my mind has moved on to other things!
    Glad you enjoyed your day off and got some new buttons too :-)

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    Replies
    1. now I have had a few more days off and my monkey mind has settled down quite a bit!

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