Spirals and Quiet

Why is it so hard to stop? To slow down, to make our hands idle, turn away from the computer and the lists of many things to do and say?

How hard it is to sit. Still for a moment or two. To stop responding to the pull of our phone, listen to nothing at all, except the bird in the tree who’s been singing all day, unheard by ears and minds as overworked and overwhelmed as ours.

How hard to close our eyes and clear our heads of cluttered thoughts. To be at peace with empty and become an enemy of loud. To seek quiet. To accept it and invite it in for a while.

How to meet our own needs whilst setting aside the needs and wants of others? How to remain present. Settled. Not distracted by forwards, sideways or back. To switch off guilt. To wait with patience. To delay, procrastinate, rest, restore, learn to say no (and mean it)

and… breathe.

I have been drawing these spirals since childhood. I spiralled my way through my last few difficult years at school, I spiralled through therapy sessions, and if you see me looking down in Zoom meetings I will be writing notes but there will be a spiral or two going on as well. They help me to gather my thoughts. To slow my mind. To stay present.

I’m inspired by someone I met recently, who showed me her clever, intricate and rather special drawings that took care, mindfulness and time. Because of her drawings I am encouraged to make time for myself and my own. I have been working more hours a day than I should, for nearly three years and my body and mind is telling me it is time to slow down, to step off, to grind to a halt…with nothing more than a book or two, a pad of paper and a pen.

So that is what I’ll do. I am off to the sea.

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