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Thread: Practicing in the hospital bed

  1. #1
    Senior Member Bunny's Avatar
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    Practicing in the hospital bed

    I've heard/read Jundo talk about practicing however is needed (on a cushion, in a chair, in a bed, and in a hospital bed even). Yesterday I had an opportunity to practice in a hospital bed. I had to have a procedure and at one point before it started I noticed anxiety building some momentum. I was laying in the hospital bed noticing my thoughts and my growing anxiety level. I could tell I was at risk for a full blown panic attack. I won't pretend that my practice was anything but clumsy (for lack of a better word) but I did remember that practice was an option. I remembered to notice my breath and some of the sounds in the environment. I noticed a radio was playing some 80's tunes. I decided to refrain from the thoughts that were feeding the anxiety and focus on the more emotionally neutral sounds from the radio. The anxiety dropped down a few notches. (Procedure went fine btw). Later that evening when I was home recovering I surfed our forum a bit. Even decided to "sit" again-just for 5 minutes. Before practice I would have never imagined I could handle something like this with so much presence. My boyfriend (who I have known for about 8 years) also remarked at how incredibly well I handle things these days, how different from my old ways.

    I've had crippling anxiety my entire life. However with practice I can now accept and experience so much more of life-even the scary parts. By getting carried away less and less by my emotional reactions I have more room for life, awareness, experience. For example, before practice I literally had panic attacks just calling to make a dental appointment. With practice I was able to be with that anxiety more and more until it lost it's power, it's solidity. I lived with that specific fear for 10 years! 10 years of avoiding the dentist. Now I can go to the dentist like a "normal person" (not loving it, but not terrified). And now I can lay in a hospital bed waiting for a procedure and still allow that to be an experienced part of life. Not only am I just able to cope with the tasks of living better, but I can connect with the world in a more meaningful way. And most importantly...I'm not watching my life go by without actually living it.

    I wanted to share this because I think it's important to know that it's possible (with practice) to heal, to grow, and to just be. Practice is not easy (at least not in my experience). I think it's important to be reminded of how worthwhile it is-how transformative it is. Even if I am the only person who gets anything out of this post-it's a good reminder for me!

    Today I am feeling pretty unwell, so my "sitting" is going to be a short one in bed. But I'm okay with that.

    With Metta,
    Bunny

  2. #2
    Senior Member Nengyo's Avatar
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    As Jundo often states, all of life is practice. I don't have any great insights into life, but some of my most profound moments since practicing have happened far away from the zaffu. I hope you feel better soon.

    Metta,
    Charles
    Try not to be a jerk-- one of the Buddhas

  3. #3
    That's great that you are see things as they appear.

    Sent from my RM-860_nam_usa_100 using Tapatalk
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    Rich
    MUHYO
    無 (MU, Emptiness) and 氷 (HYO, Ice) ... Emptiness Ice ...

  4. #4
    Senior Member Heishu's Avatar
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    Sorry to hear that you are not feeling well and I also hope that you will be better soon.

    Anxiety attacks can be an awesome reminder that we still have a long way to go. I can relate to all that you said. I can spur one on in the middle of the night. Funny how that comes about. Sound asleep, wake up, mind flushes some thought out and then 'bam', the chatty brain begins and I am wide awake. This creates anxiety of being awake and not getting needed rest. Practice does help. Years back I would have been up the rest of the night. Now it does not last very long, most times. Anxiety is a tough monkey to wrestle down and keep under control.

    Keep up the good practice, you have seen the results.

    Gassho,
    Heishu


    “Blessed are the flexible, for they never get bent out of shape." Author Unknown

  5. #5
    Thank you Bunny.

    I have found that medical situations are some of the most powerful for Practice, from sitting in the dentists chair, to a minor surgical procedure, to being in the ICU with pneumonia ... to being bedside when our baby daughter was in the ICU. This is where this Practice's rubber meets life's road.

    Gassho, J
    ALL OF LIFE IS OUR TEMPLE

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