Patience is a virtue

Is this my last ‘test’? I hope so: In my attempts to straighten out some kinks in my computer system, your inbox was bombarded. Thank you so much for your patience.

Patience. That word is packed with punch!. Do you remember the old yarn about ‘patience?’ ‘Patience is a virtue, possess it if you can; SELDOM found in woman, NEVER FOUND in man!’  People who have a chronic illness need patience in spades and to this end, we’ll discuss how patience and meditation are survival ‘musts!’. 

When we’re patient, we’re able to remove ourselves from extraneous chatter.’ When we do this, we can see facts objectively, with a clear head, making us more able to reframe our thoughts. THAT’S what I think most of us with chronic illness need.  This is the goal of some meditations: To still your mind so that you can reframe your inner dialogue. Many meditations invite you to imagine someplace that was very relaxing and peaceful to YOU.

The place I chose is in a meadow high upon a mountaintop in Wyoming. I lie-in the grass which is about 6 inches high while the sun shines high in the clear blue sky; dotted with fluffy clouds. Then I involve all my senses. First, what else do I see? What are all the things I hear? Complete silence, or is a plane flying overhead on occasion, or is there an occasional bird or cricket? What do I feel? I feel my horse’s gentle nudging on my skin on occasion as he grazes. Do I feel sun, cold, wind or rain on my skin? Does the long grass scrape or sooth my skin?

Do I speak? Is someone in the same area, though I don’t talk to him or her?  What do I smell? I smell the woods and pine cones. and the outdoors from last night’s rain, has a fresh scent.

Exhaust all of your senses and then relax, allowing yourself to walk slowly off the mountaintop (or other favorite place) and come back to this place.

Now do a short assessment of the things that bothered you before your mini-journey and compare that to those things that bother you now. Most likely, the 10 minute ‘vacation’ you took, recharged your batteries and your headache, while not gone, is likely less bothersome!  

Besides making you feel better, changes can be measured objectively. Before the imagery, blood pressure was taken and then taken after meditation. They dropped considerably. Also, blood chemistries were recorded before meditation. After imagery, those same chemistries recorded. Amongst many markers, cortisol levels were substantially lower after meditation. Heart rate was lower and diabetics had a lower blood sugar. 


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