Today was very challenging. I found out that they arrested the man who robbed the yoga studio and that he is out on bail. He signed a restraining order to not contact me that has my name on it. I thought I was over my fear. It's scary that he has my name. I feel very vulnerable. I know he probably won't try to find me but he could. I called the police department and they said that in order to issue a restraining order for him not to contact me he has to know who not to contact. That makes sense to me. The woman on the phone said "Wouldn't you rather he had a restraining order?" I think the answer is yes. However, he had no idea who I was before that. This is an opportunity for my mind to cook up all sorts of worrisome stories about what could happen in the future. I am a very creative person and if I use my creativity to conjure up worst case scenarios I can terrorize myself. When I notice the image of a scary vision on my mental screen, I go underneath it to the fear that is in my belly. The vulnerability I feel now has triggered the vulnerability I felt when the robbery happened. It doesn't mean the work I did to release the fear at the time didn't work. It's another layer of the violation surfacing to be experienced and released. It is helping me to see the difference between a story about the fear and the experience of the fear itself. A story builds up the fear as it escalates into an even bigger story. The experience of the fear itself, although very scary at first, allows the fear to dissipate. I breathe full deep breaths into my belly. My belly feels tight and achey, my breath is short and choppy. As I breath my body shakes as waves of fear move over me and out of me. I let the sounds out and let myself cry. I realize the most wounding part is how cautious and mistrusting of strangers I have become since the robbery. The shock that a person could do something like this to me has generalized and clouded over some of my feelings of being connected to others.
The Buddha said,"Fear is always an anticipation of what has not yet come. Our fear and separation are great, but the truth of our connection is greater still. "
I know if I keep working with this fear that I will return to my sense of connection with all beings. Maybe I will return with a healthy measure of caution based on practical experience. Even though we are all one, there are people I don't feel safe with for all different reasons. It seems important to be discerning and let my decisions about how I protect myself come from mindfully using my intuition. Rules or knee jerk reactions based on fear create more fear. In my circle, I protect myself from the inside with boundaries so I don't need walls to protect myself from the outside. My reactions to what happens in my life can come from an open heart. I can keep my heart open if I allow myself to be present with what is happening now. Right now I feel afraid and I have a sense of being held in my fear. Being held, I feel safer and that everything will be alright. I am grateful.
What are you afraid of? What stories are you making up about it?
Would you be willing to go down into your body and feel it?