Take My Breath Away

Wednesday, at dusk.                                      Capo Beach

This weekend I had a glimpse of what it was like to struggle for life’s most basic gift: the breath.  Held captive by the strangling chains of bronchitis, my chest wheezed in difficulty to simply fill my lungs with air.  Getting a breath was cumbersome and painful.  There was a scary moment when I asked myself how I would pull through.  Each attempt was drowned in audible defeat; a resigned groan whimpered from my chest cavity as I tried to pull air through my lungs.  The sound alone distracted me from sleeping and doing anything else but being 100% present in that breath.

Yet when I did take a step away from it, I thought about the Haitians hanging onto dear life, perhaps losing their notion of hope as family members still haven’t turned up and the pain of injury has grown larger than their understanding of a better tomorrow.  I thought about little babies who unjustly fall sick and haven’t developed the consciousness to know that someone will be there to take care of and comfort them.  And then I immediately felt grateful.

I realized this simple action of – – -INHALE – – -EXHALE – – – is such a gift.  It’s life.  The most basic and essential element.

A yogi friend who was recently given a very difficult and challenging situation to work through shared this week that the single thing that is pulling her through this tough time is her breath: concentrated and purposeful attention to the life energy that she breathes in and out. It is stabilizing and renewing.  Comforting and healing.

We live in an age of “Om” masters, of meditation and yoga, in a market-driven quest for body-mind-soul miracles, however, sometimes not until an experience becomes your own do you witness or understand its power and greater significance.

I am blessed with good health in general that will pull me through an otherwise scary moment, and a new respect for something often taken for granted.

Enjoy your breath.

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~ by maureenmoore on February 10, 2010.

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