Renee TarantowskiJan 8, 2018

Mindfulness Hangover

Today I wrote, I think, one of my most insightful articles.  

A series of uneventful occurrences brought me to clean, watch and be moved emotionally.  

Here is a snippet:

It’s very difficult to keep the line between the past and the present. Edie Beale

The Basement Project

If you have been part of my on line life or my in person life you know I’ve been slightly obsessed with cleaning out my basement. We moved nearly 7 years ago and the basement became the place for memories, hopes, dreams, tragedy, lose, projects started, projects finished but homeless, projects in planning — which really amounts too “oh, wouldn’t that be fun to make a table top out of all my broken china!” What was I thinking?

I have started and stopped this project many, many times. Honestly, facing all that the basement represented was too much. Now, after I’ve been in therapy for a year . . . I could face the basement and all the lessons it had to teach me.

The Art of Learning

As a teacher and student, I understand both sides of learning. I’m a better teacher than I am a student . . . or maybe I should say my teacher needs to be a special person. I am teachable but not by just anyone — probably why I was a horrible student in school. Probably why only a few of my closest friends who “speak Renee” can explain things to me in a way that I will receive it. I am so lucky to have them in my life.

When it comes to lessons of life I am self taught. I graduated top of my class in the school of hard knocks and still in the graduate program.

I think of the basement as a huge lesson — not just in cleaning and organizing but in my true field of study: mindfulness.

The art of learning is taking an experience and finding the life lesson with in. The art of teaching is inviting you into my story and upon your departure you are enlightened.

The Final Day of Cleaning

On January 7, 2018 I finished the basement project.

I now have a Mindfulness Hangover. I have touched everything in that basement while asking myself:

  • does this bring me joy?
  • can I buy this again later if I need it?
  • will it bless someone else?
  • do I frigging need another ______?
  • what the hell was I thinking?
  • how do I feel when I’m holding this?

I cried. I was pissed. I went into the bathroom mirror and berated myself for being stupid. I took long deep breaths. I went back into the bathroom and apologized to myself. I loaded boxes, I emptied boxes. I put stuff in the good will box, then took it out, then returned it. I laughed. I was moved to tears when I found a certain photo of my husband guiding my daughter across a cold flowing stream. I was mad at myself for thinking that I could possibly do it all — no longer can I be the keeper of ALL the physical and emotional stuff. I am not a Super Woman.

You can read the whole post on Medium

My Manifesto

A Simple Prayer

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