Stop the noise

So. I was on the bus heading to meet a friend and listening to a podcast (this is my life in a nutshell - podcasts and walking or busing).

I'd recently discovered Strangers (which is great and if you like narrative I highly recommend it), the episode I was on was called Falling Slowly.


You should check it out.

The main character, Lyena, was so in her head so busy, busy, busy thinking she wasn't able to be present.  She wasn't really there. She and her boyfriend go for a walk and all she wants is to not engage with him so she can be alone with her thoughts. She just wants to think all of her thoughts and not be with this person. 

Can you relate to this? That desire to just have the quite to think, think, think? 

Anywho. To get away she climbs a tree.

And she falls.

As she is falling her brain clears and she just knows there is nothing she can do, so, she surrenders. She lets go to the inevitability of the fall...

and time slows down...

and her thoughts stop...

And she can see the beauty of the tree, the details of the bark, the leaves on the branches - the way she describes this moment is so beautiful I teared up.

When she lands her spinal cord is severed and she is rendered completely and wholly paralyzed from the waist down. The rest of the story is about her recovery and her coming into her own in this new body. 

It is awful that it took such a monumental occurrence for her to wake up to her life (like really awful) but, the point of her story was that she wouldn't trade it. 

So many of us shut out the world. So many of us want to be left alone to our thoughts. So many of us are anxious to get to the next thing. That we are never really present. Never really IN our life.

And then what?

That is what I took away from this story. The power of choosing to be present. Of choosing to engage. Of choosing to surrender.