“Gosh, I wish I had more time to spend with my kids.” The coronavirus genie made that wish come true. “I’m so tired of traveling, I’m long overdue for a staycation.” Poof! The coronavirus genie made another wish come true. We have received a very rare opportunity to slow down and smell the proverbial roses. They just happen to be in full bloom. Talk about perfect timing!
Meditation practices teach us many lessons about timing and how to manage adversity by adjusting our thinking patterns. One of the most famous meditation teachers named Buddha said this: “Your mind is a powerful thing. When you filter it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.” Yes, the coronavirus pandemic is a serious and challenging situation. And whole truth be told, life will present us many more serious and challenging situations in the years to come. So now, as with other times we’ve faced adversity, we have an opportunity to practice the application of positive thinking to reframe a total disaster into something else…like a time to slow down and make positive moves within ourselves and outside ourselves in our community.
This blog is filled with uplifting stories about how various people from the YHC community have thought positively and made some good moves as a response to the coronavirus challenge. Some of these stories are observations from the outside; other stories are reflections from the inside.
Let’s begin with Regina which is THE place to begin since she is the one who began YHC. Begin at the beginning kinda thing. Regina lives in a small cul-de-sac of five (yes, five!) houses in which families play in the street and watch out for each other. Like many small neighborhoods, Regina’s ‘hood has a Mrs. Kravitz (remember the TV show Bewitched?) who stays aware of all the comings and goings of the neighbors. In a Mrs. Kravitz moment, Regina witnessed an extraordinary and beautiful thing happening out in the street for several days. Kids playing with their parents! Lots of smiling. In pre-coronavirus times, Regina never witnessed these parents playing with their kids. She witnessed a constant stream of coming and going with childcare providers such as grandparents and babysitters. Regina did NOT witness smiling happy children; rather, she witnessed the constant movement of cargo. Sad but that’s how it looked to an outside observer. So imagine Regina’s happy heart exploding as she noticed, day after day, dads and moms playing with their kids in the driveway and in a makeshift basketball court on the street. Regina remarked, “It was so sweet to see.”
Indeed, “sweet to see.” Another sight for sour eyes (that’s not a misspelling, it’s a pun) occurred when Regina made a spontaneous trip (which this writer affectionately refers to as a “love ambush”) to visit some close friends who were fostering a dog, Finn, who was displaced due to the impact of the coronavirus challenge on animal shelters. Everyone was happy to see Regina and they all set up an outdoor pow-wow to catch up and connect, sitting on pieces of slate on the ground since the main house was under construction. Everyone carefully observed the social distancing mandate except for…you guessed it…Finn. Dogs obey different laws, you see. The law of love is always top dog. Woof!!
Imagine a dog jumping up and down on a pogo stick. Funny sight. Well, this author witnessed such a thing in the Costco parking lot in Redwood City. No fooling. Psych! Fooling. Actually Regina and Brad were out on one of their shopping capers in which they make it a point to act in ways (natural to them) that are amusing (to onlookers). Well, they do that anyway and have since they first met, but these days a laugh is worth a lot more than it was a month ago. Such is the guffaw law of supply and demand that Regina learned in deep meditation while connecting to the Goddess of Giggling (aka her inner girl). Back to Costco. Parking lot. While Regina was packing up the car with her Costco goodies, she pulled out a pogo stick to make space for her other purchases and started jumping around the parking lot, to the delight of others who slowed their cars, rolled down their windows and made happy remarks. Spontaneous joy can be so entertaining!
YHC has witnessed other spontaneous joy-gatherings as a consequence of needing to conduct livestream classes to ensure safety by social distancing. Social distancing? I don’t think so. It’s more like social fitnessing (a clever turn of phrase from Mila)! There are groups of YHC members who are now forming “goddess posses” and other groovy groups, organizing their gay gatherings by taking livestream classes together. For example, we have Jennifer, Paulina, Martha, Bettina, Aimee, Deena and Amy who make a point of meeting together digitally before they take one of Val’s classes so they can encourage each other to keep moving in happy and healthy ways. And I’ll bet there’s a bit of commiserating about sore glutes and gams offline the day after as well. Some of the "off the mat" goodness has been the sharing of a recipe for an herbal tea to support the immune system, and sending beauty to one another with photos of chalk art created by one of their kids. They are giving and receiving beautiful, positive support and motivation! This texting group extends to one more... "It's been nice to do something with my 5 year old; this is Wonder Girl working out with Val"
As Regina says in her message to the community on the YHC home page, “We’re all in this together.” Yes, we are. So let’s continue to encourage each other to stay real about how we feel AND to call up the power of positive thinking to take the wet plaster of disaster and dry it out with the warmth of positive thinking. Be the sun. Know we are one. Move in a positive direction. Choose well and feel swell. Buddha has these last words: “What we think, we become.”