I had been a worrier all my life. I had carried it as a badge of honor, inherited from my mother and before her, my grandmother. We had learned that if you cared enough, you worried. I remember whenever we left home for any outing, it was always to the words of “Be careful.”
Then, I was given some things to cope with in life, (as we always are given,) that I was ill-prepared for. I suffered, and worry turned to stress, stress to anxiety and depression.
In my spiritual quest, I found mindfulness meditation……for me a gift from God. I learned it initially from Father Joe Mitchell at the Earth and Spirit Center. I have been devoted to practicing it for the past 11 years. Such a simple, powerful experience.
Whether for 5 minutes or 45 minutes, it brings a peace and calm to my life. The experience of mindfulness meditation, of bringing focus to your breathing, has been healing for me. It is the direct experience of focusing and letting go. We learned that thoughts are always present in our minds, but understanding that with gentle acceptance and then just focus on breathing you can allow such peace and comfort in your life.
I believe in it so, that I have taken training to be a mindfulness mentor for others. Right now, I with others, am teaching it to girls at Maryhurst. Whenever I go there, it is a gift. When I sit with others who are meditating, the power of the group always enhances my own practice. A true blessing. Written by Carla McMillin