Published on August 28, 2008
(Art by sammy_j052)
But my job is going well. I’m more organized then ever and my lessons are running smoothly. Everything is pleasant in my life. Except, after Maria said the “stress” word, I realized that I work in a bubbled world where stress sometimes plays a game of dodge ball. The teachers are buzzing with negativity like a fluorescent light bulb. There are meetings, emails, and paperwork to keep up with. But seriously, those things are manageable..and I don’t let myself get to wrapped up in that. I think the stress I have taken on is of a deeper level then just overwhelming work stuff. The stress comes from creating an open, creative environment where kids enter of all backgrounds, needs, and natures. I open myself up to their energies all day long…and I think I’ve been carrying a lot of it with me. That’s why my stomach has been weird and I feel so depressed.
I have a friend here who is a Reiki master. For those of you who are unfamiliar with that, it is an individual who is trained to work with a person’s energy and chakras. When I first started teaching in a public school full time I had these same “blues”–the funky stomach and black clouds. My friend told me its because the kids latch on to me and suck the energy from me…not with a negative intention…they’re just being kids. She expressed to me that I have a great inner light and that kids run to it. The important thing, she said, is that I need to both protect myself and take care of myself energy wise. She wasn’t saying to chow down on a protein bar or eat a good hardy breakfast (which both are not bad things to do). This care is on a different level. She explained how crucial water is for me throughout the day, and that before going to school to imagine a great white bubble around me that will help keep the kids from putting chains on me and even attaching roots. She then said, before I step into the car to leave to do a quick little ceremony of symbolically cutting the chains off and pulling out the roots. She ended by explaining to me how important it was to shower when I get home and take the clothes off I wore during the day. I always do that anyways. I did this little ceremony for awhile last year, and funny thing…after I stopped doing it….the blues came back…that was towards the end of the year. Read some of my earliest posts on Dirty Footprints and you’ll see and feel the presence of those black clouds.
Except today, I realized that its even more then cutting symbolic chains and pulling out roots….its about taking real time for yourself. Journaling. How much I miss it…and didn’t realize it until my brain was having a breakdown. Yoga class—how much I’ve missed being a part of that group energy you can only find in a Yoga class. Art–my own art—picking up my own paintbrush–expressing my own life–not helping other little hands find their own truth. That’s a real biggie that’s been missing.
Stress takes over, when we begin to neglect ourselves. Stress comes in many forms…sometimes stress is even spiritual. This kind of stress reminds us how important it is to take care of that soul of ours. We need to nurture it just like a young child. We need to check on it–just like emails and meetings. We need to work on it–just like paperwork. We need to protect it, wash it, and even honor it with rituals and ceremonies.
Today I really had an awakening. The way my body and mind have been reacting lately are completely linked to the stress level my spirit has been experiencing. It is so much easier to blame it on the material things of our life–like our job, our bills, or even random events of our day. But if we dig deeper, maybe we can find that the stress is linked on a spiritual level. It might be something we’ve been carrying with us for ages even. When we neglect our soul and its needs, it’s forced to speak to us the only way it knows how to communicate: through our bodies and mind.
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