Monday, July 28, 2008

The Zen of Being Zen

I did it I did it I did it!!! Well, some. I actually caught myself in situations where my attachment to an outcome would create great unhappiness for all and was able to release the attachment creating great happiness for all.

First was over the weekend when we forced a restaurant lunch when we should have stayed home. I had an inkling it would go badly, but I saw myself getting really attached to things going well and I let it all go. We went and had a horrible lunch. Pablo melted down BIG TIME, multiple times, the baby was fussy, and my partner ended up giving up eating in favor of taking the boyo outside for the benefit of all patrons. And it was FINE. Actually fine. Not that teeth gritted, "yes I know this was a learning experience" kind of fine, but the actual relaxed smile kind of fine. I was peaceful. It was a good lunch.

Today Pablo and I went for a neighborhood walk. This is something I generally avoid because going at 4 year old speed makes me NUTS. I go crazy from the alternate running like a wild beast and plodding along like a nag on the way to the glue factory. I totally get that I am not the best when it comes to patience. So I generally avoid times when I need to be patient. But today I really wanted some exercise and it was still pretty cool at 9 AM(call me crazy but anything under 100 is cool...ish) so I asked Pablo if he wanted to go for a walk. He was thrilled and jumped up to grab clothes and shoes (note, this is a measure of off the scale excitement since he NEVER cooperates about getting dressed quickly).

Within steps it became clear that "walk" meant something different to him than me. His version involved "flying" his new matchbox airplane while giving detailed descriptions of the trips to various countries with various Toy Story characters piloting and co-piloting. (His OLD jet fell into the bowels of the grand piano, and for some reason I keep resisting Pablo's suggestion that if I just turn the piano upside down and SHAKE it, the toy will fall out.) Anyway, I noticed feeling irritated by the slow pace. I let go of an expectation of getting exercise or going fast and instead focused on my feet touching the ground. We had a great time. We went to a park and played, explored the neighborhood, and generally had a morning that is the kind that I hope Pablo looks back on as an adult and thinks, "Yeah, my mom and I had such great times together when I was little. What a good thing it is that I cured cancer and still have time to be a rock star so I can buy her an island in the Caribbean." Or something.

So I am a Zen master with the kids. Ha. It's a start!


  1. Patience... it really takes patience to be patient.
    Such hard lessons to learn.
    GLad you had a good day.

  2. What a lovely post. I desperately need to be in the "now" more often with my boys. I am never disapointed when I choose this mind set. So i think I will embrace their smiles when they want me to watch them play video games (for a while) and then suggest we sit oout under a tree on our chairs and read a book together. Ill worry about work and laundry later. Thanks for the reminder.

    PS - Glad to have found you on BlogHer. If youre up for it, come participate in Fun Monday this week on our site - I bet you would have some good thoughts!!

  3. GREAT POST! I try to be patient but am not as successful as I would like most times, but when I am, I, too, want a Carribean Island :)