I was relaxing and writing in my journal while sipping tea a few nights ago, when I heard a new email arrive. I had been acknowledging a deeply felt gratitude and essential joy that comes with being mindful and open to feeling the wounded aching heart of compassion with others I worked with in counseling sessions.
I wrote that vulnerability is the direct experience underneath our defenses. And in those shared moments of honesty we surrender, rest and open. Vulnerability is restful and powerful. The opposite of clinging and defensive.
Later I opened the email: BiG TrouBle!!!Please Call Immediately!!! I stood there in a mindful pause to breathe in and breathe out through the alarm. I had just spent phone time with my friend that very day. She had been sharing that her beloved family of four had been dealing with a flu virus and were going back to the doctor that afternoon due to persistent symptoms. She spoke the words: "My six-year old daughter has leukemia. This is a game-changer."
As luck would have it later the prognosis came back "CURABLE" with intensive chemotherapy. Their journey through illness has begun. Together their care, empathy and love will be the current moving them thru worry, fatigue, change and will support the effort to show-up and meet each challenge. And moments inside bodhichitta, the awakened heart bring so much relief. May they all rest in that love and compassion, joy and peace.
This is dedicated to Chloe.
The words of the Buddha offer these truths:
Hatred never ceases by hatred
but by love alone is healed.
This is the ancient and eternal law.
Like a caring mother
holding and guarding the life
of her only child,
so with a boundless heart
hold yourself and all beings.
May I, you and all beings be met and filled with compassion and loving-kindness in the hour of sudden change, pain, fear and uncertainty.