Monday, February 27, 2012

Slow Down You Move Too Fast!

This weekend I found myself frequently humming, "Slow down, you move too fast ..."

Lately, it feels like life is moving too fast. A month feels like a week--a week, like a day.

Saturday night we really felt the effects of this. 

My husband and I were supposed to attend a big fund raiser for my son's school. As we got closer to the hour of the event, we realized we were tired. Really tired. Lay down and sleep for five days tired (and this is in spite of the fact that we've all been going to bed on time!).

So instead of donning our party clothes, we put on scarves and jackets and drove to a nearby nature preserve to watch Jupiter, Venus and the Moon--through a powerful telescope--dance in the dark night sky. Our entire family was in bed asleep by 9:00.

A parent I talked to the other night--who is also a teacher--agreed, "Things seem to be moving really fast; everything seems unusually intense right now."

I saw a friend last night at an Indian restaurant who echoed our experience, "What's going on? It feels like we're all living at warp speed these days! Where's the off switch?"

This past weekend I went to a Kundalini yoga workshop on living in uncertain times and our teacher affirmed, yes, things are moving faster (on every level) and they're only going to continue to speed up.

When it feels like things are moving too fast, I rebel. I dig in my heels. I stop in my tracks. I stand still. And come home to myself--through my breath and often, through nature.

My brother lives in cabin in the woods in North Carolina; he sent me this haunting poem yesterday. I can't get it out of my mind. It beckons me to find ways and moments in my week to step off the merry-go-round and just s-t-a-n-d  still.

Maybe it will do the same for you.

Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you,
If you leave it you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.

~ David Wagoner ~

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Video:"Feelin' Groovy"-Simon and Garfunkel; The 59th Street Bridge Song. Written in 1966, the year I was born. Growing up in the sixties and seventies Simon and Garfunkel were constant voices in my home.


Krista Lawlor said...

Thank you Renee for sharing this wonderful poem. Jon Kabat Zinn read the same poem a few years ago at an MBSR retreat that I was attending and it was a profound moment of 'coming home' to myself...I now have it at my desk at work as a reminder to be still even in the midst of a hectic fast-paced day.
With gratitude,

gypsy girl said...

What does self care mean to me...self care is an absolute necessity for life. For years I have planned a "me" day and once a day I take time to just "be". There are some days it just doesn't happen and it reflects all I encompass throughout the day. When I practice self care I am listening to every cell of my body and soul as to "what I can do for you today". Sometimes it's the same thing, like journaling and yoga. Other days I find I need an adventure. I will take myself out to shops and places I have never been and have a date with me, myself and I. Self care is equivalent to self love. One must continuously live in that atmosphere to truly be of service to the rest of the world.