I begin my day with a mantra meditation and central thought, both inspired by the meditation series created by Deepak Chopra and Oprah Winfrey: “So hum.” I am. I am free. I am free. I am free.
The mountain I imagine I face is a Rocky Mountain from near to where I come from. Banff. Snow at the top. Ice on the peak. Beautiful skiffs of snow blowing off the top. Sky full of colour. Beautiful. Peacefully resting there, yes, the peak. While I, intertwined in my inner turmoil and conflicts, stand at the bottom and think to myself: beautiful to look at, but I will not journey up that mountain. I have my own mountains to climb.
Many years ago, I took a course in becoming my personal best, and there was an activity within the course: to overcome fear, we committed to climbing walls, to rock climbing. I did it with vigour and joy, enthusiasm for this new and wonderful task. As I told my therapist at the time, I did not feel any fear. I think I need to jump out of a plane. That would put me in touch with my fear. I could then overcome my fear. She looked at me thoughtfully and said, “Lorelei, I think you could jump out of a plane to overcome your fear. Or you could pick up the phone and call one of the record company executives you haven’t wanted to call.” For the fear of rejection. For the fear of how hard it would be to get that holy grail of some support which I was looking for in my career as a musician and songwriter at the time. Oh, dear. I had discovered that fear isn’t something you overcome in grand leaps. It is something you overcome with every practical decision you make in choosing to face it, and do something about it. Fear. I have lived with it, overcome it, it has grown back and I continually live with fear and overcome it in one decision at a time to face my fear and do something in spite of it. There is a book, Feel the Fear and Do It Anyway. Many years ago I read that. It might be time to read it again or just to hold in mind its title as a central thought.
Fear. It resides. But life awaits. And there are places I wish to go. Don’t we all have them? I stretch and pull my head from side to side and feel my body warm to the conscious demands I place upon it: to wake up. Stretching. The last time I consciously enjoyed a stretch is when I stood in a drama class in university over 25 years ago and readied myself to become an orange bouncy ball. I was a drama student then. I willingly engaged in that process of suspension of disbelief and immersion. I touched towards my toes and strived to reach them. I swayed from the base of my spine and let my hips support my torso as it hung upside down and enjoyed that delicious moment. I breathed. I savoured the presence of my colleagues. I had nowhere to be at that moment but where I was. Right there in that room, in my stockinged feet, in the darkness, open to possibility.
Days like this, it is good to remember there is nothing but possibility. I choose to start with that in mind. Free. Because I am.