What I’m seeking

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When I was in the trauma therapist’s office last month, she asked me to think of something that brought me peace. Something I could focus on to calm my breathing and use during somatic healing.

Sitting there in the middle of Los Angeles on a sunny 70 degree December afternoon, all I could think about was snow and how quiet everything is right after a snowfall. At our home in Portland we live above a noisy freeway. Pretty much 24 hours a day there is noise coming from the cars and trucks on I-5, a sort of droning noise. It’s not like the city sounds of say, NYC, where honking horns and sirens dominate an already crowded and brash city. Portland is located in one big forest, so there are very peaceful spots within the city at all times. I wanted to envision something special.

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The park around the corner.

Portland, Oregon doesn’t actually get much snow, but a few years ago we had a snowstorm arrive, completely unpredicted, in the early hours of a Sunday morning. When I woke, there was complete silence. It was actually really eerie, that level of quiet. At first it freaked me out and I couldn’t quite understand why. Then I realized that level of silence was disorienting. Once I opened the shades and saw all the snow and not a single car on the road directly below us or on the highway further below, I embraced the silence with a sort of awe and wonder. I went outside and just stood in the stillness.

“In the moments after a snowstorm concludes, leaving behind a landscape shrouded in white, the great outdoors often becomes noticeably quieter. As it turns out, there’s a scientific reason behind the calming silence, with the characteristics of snow playing a big role in how sound can travel. When light, fluffy snowflakes accumulate on the ground, they act as a sound absorber, dampening sound waves.” (accuweather.com)

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That silence was what I was going for, all the sounds of the city, gone. In the quiet of the therapist’s office, I pictured a gorgeous winter landscape and the kind of silence only big, fluffy snowflakes can create. This is the level of calm I seek during my daily meditation ritual.

We may not get a lot of snow in Portland, but there are mountains all around us. As I welcome in 2020, and am still struggling with moments of blah after a holiday bout of the flu, as a gift to myself, I am going to seek out a cabin in the snowy woods to spend a weekend in silence. No phone, no TV, no outside noise. I’ll probably take Blue Eyes with me and he can practice his Noble Silence (or at least I hope he will 😉 ).

Last year was both wonderful and horrible. I’m still not right. I’m still working back to myself. I have lots of plans and goals for 2020. Topping the list is taking care of myself and maybe upping those antidepressants I never wanted to have to take. I think it’s time.

The therapist sent me an email with inspirational quotes. This one spoke to me today.

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Right now I would settle for what gives my soul enough energy to get out of the frickin’ bed in the morning, but I do aspire for more.

2020 GOAL: SETTING MY SOUL ON FIRE, AGAIN.

20 thoughts on “What I’m seeking

  1. I too love snow, it purifies everything, makes everything look beautiful, and as you say it silences the world. We have never had a snow dump here since moving here, global warming is sadly evident. But we did have the hoar- frost which seemed to do the same thing, made everything beautiful and brought silence with it. Sending warm wishes Kat, we too are finding it hard to get going, since Molly died the house seems so very different. Hugs ❤️❤️

    Liked by 2 people

    • That hoar frost is simply amazing. Just gorgeous. We get ice storms here in Portland every 5-7 years I would say. Everything is covered in ice. It’s beautiful, but dangerous. We’re not out in the countryside.

      I remember when my green-eyed Chloe passed. We were all so sad for days and every room I went in to I thought I saw her. Some days I was sure she was there, kind of an alternate reality… on a certain chair in my room, or on the warm cable box in the family room. We still miss her so. She actually was the caretaker of the rest of the animals. She kept Bernie the mini Aussie in line when he started to get too rambunctious. She cleaned Lily the golden retriever’s ears, and she slept with her Persian sister to keep her warm. She was a big part of our family. xoxo

      Liked by 1 person

      • I swear I saw white feet disappearing past my bedroom door! Thank you Kat, I know you understand, she has been a catalyst in a way and we may be leaving France and moving on to Ireland. In fact it us very likely. I find that things like this make me reconsider. Hugs to you Kat, you’re a good person. ❤️♥️

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  2. So…. I lost my whole post in responding. Sigh. (Hope this doesn’t double-post)

    You are spectacular. IMHO

    Re: the innocence. All of the literature I’ve read regarding trust / innocence = we will never get it back (the true innocence of marital trust) but, hopefully, our spouses will learn to be more trustworthy, helping us feel more secure. That helps rebuild trust.

    Re: snowy places. I know them well. I looooong for the opposite (warm in winter). I do understand the peace of snow. It’s real. I’m glad you can go back to those places, like Kyoto, when you need to tap into them, see them, and feel them. xoxoxo Lisa

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you so much, as always, for the kind words. I agree, the innocence is gone. I just hope I can still be kind and grounded in this new reality. It’s difficult sometimes. For me, in winter, I wish it would snow more here, but instead we get a lot of rain and cloudy skies, which does make me long for a tropical beach!!! ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  3. It’s so weird to feel “not right” isn’t it? It’s unsettling to see yourself in the mirror and yet not feel like yourself. I get it. I know I lost my love innocence, but I also feel like a bit of my spirit vanished too. I’m working on getting that groove back too. 🙂

    I love the post-snowfall silence too. Or a good sunset. The kind with colors and streaks of light so pretty it seems like angels must have made it. We don’t get many good sunsets in winter in my neck of the woods, so I’ll have to settle for snow for the next few months. 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • We get so many gorgeous sunsets at the beach I suppose I’m spoiled. Snow, not so much. I just love the thought of the soft powdery snowflakes creating little sound absorbing air pockets. If only I could really block out all the other noise, both literally and figuratively! xo

      Liked by 3 people

  4. Hi Kat and Happy New Year to you! Snow can be a beautiful thing, and surprisingly, therapeutic. I just want to say that I wish you lots of peace and happiness this year and I hope that you continue to heal from the trauma and heartache that you have endured. All the best to you. 😃

    Liked by 3 people

  5. You should check out Kripalu in Stockbridge MA. https://kripalu.org/
    Plenty of snowy beauty there. They offer silent meals; the food is Ayurvedic and really good. I would not recommend staying on property but you can get a day pass that includes meals when you attend a program.
    Or Canyon Ranch Lenox which is also in the Berkshires (🎵though the Berkshires seem dreamlike on account of their frosting🎶) but more luxurious.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I see you as a person with your soul on fire, so I can’t wait to hear what you’re like when it’s *really* on fire. 😉

    Snow is beautiful. And peaceful. And fun! And cold. And hazardous. I grew up in a place where we literally had snow up to the cross-arms of telephone poles when I was a kid. That’s many feet! Not the norm, but several inches / feet at a time is normal here. Although when we moved “back home”, we moved to a micro-climate in the area where we don’t typically get *those* snow dumps (dustings or a few inches). I have green grass right now. My hometown has a foot+ on the ground. And I’m north of that place. LOL I digress.

    I wish you peace, Kat. And inspiration. And whatever you wish for you. You have all of this in you. You are a rock star.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Oh, I’m pretty spectacular when I’m really on fire, lol, kidding! It still saddens me how much I innocently enjoyed life before discovery. I don’t know why I can’t get that back, but I know it’s gone. Everything seems a bit in shadow now. I’m trying though!

      I have never lived in a snowy place although it snowed more the winter I lived in Kyoto, Japan than pretty much any other winter I have experienced and it was beautiful there. All the temples shrouded in snow. It was a long time ago, but I remember it well. A much more innocent time.

      Thank you for the wishes, beleeme. I wish you the same! xoxo

      Liked by 2 people

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