Sitting, staring, and meditating – while waves rolled in minute after minute, hour after hour, day after day, week after week – a calmness like never before oozed over me, bringing with it deep emotional strength.
From November through January, I lived in my rooftop tent at Playa Zipolite on the Oaxacan coast of Mexico. This quiet time, living on the beach and staring at waves, has changed who I am, how I react to life situations, and how I make decisions; all are now more informed by mindfulness. Through mindfulness, I now move forward confidently in life, in each decision I make and in choosing the outcome I wish to obtain. With this confidence, I have come to accept the concept of living a simple life. While difficult to explain, I can assure you that once you experience the simple life of Latin America, as I did this winter, the visceral cleansing spirit remains with you forever.
While sitting on the beach, staring at the waves for literally hours at a time, day after day, my emotional strength was tempered. The waves of the Oaxacan Pacific Coast were a constant in my life: rhythmic, soothing, grounding, never ceasing. Through this constant, the normal frenzied thinking of my mind transcended into a calm, thoughtful place where I gained emotional strength, peace and an acceptance for the path in front of me. Amputation.
After these three months of tranquility, I’m now back in Minnesota preparing for surgery. Maggi, the tent, is suspended from the garage ceiling and Apollo is parked safely below her, here at my house in Saint Paul. The energy of the 1926 bungalow is amazing, and I know I will feel content and comfortable living here for my 18 to 24 months of rehabilitation.
Although I am now living back in Saint Paul, Joe is not. Life recently shifted for Joe and me and we have each gone our own way. This moving apart is essential for me at this point in my life. Change is not easy but, through change, if we are mindful and open, we can learn from experience and grow to become healthier citizens of this planet. It may sound odd to some, but I feel fortunate to have faced extreme emotional and physical challenges both past and present. If it were not for the physical disabilities from my service in the U.S. Air Force, I am confident I would not be as mentally strong and healthy as I am today.
Going forward, I will not be posting updates regarding my surgery or rehabilitation on this website; however, I have a Caring Bridge web site where people may follow my progress. If you would like to follow along, please send me an email by clicking on the “Contact Us” link at the top of the page, and I will reply with specifics. I appreciate your kind thoughts and positive energy as I move forward into this next chapter of my life.