Beginner's Heart

salmonella via wikipediaFood poisoning is the pits. Actually, I can’t think of a publicly permissible word that truly describes the experience. Suffice to say? Horrible.

It sneaks up on you, after what seemed like a normal meal, and suddenly you’re sicker than you can remember being. Fever, cold sweats, all the other less-talked-about elements. Miserable.

But here’s the deal: it’s kind of an exercise in beginner’s mind, if not heart: it does pass. It just takes far longer than you’d like. I came down sick sick sick Friday evening, and am only today feeling quasi-human.


And was it salmonella? I have no clue. It might have been listeria. Or campylobacteri. Or who knows what?? It wasn’t anticipated — like most bad things. And it wasn’t welcomed. And it took forever to pass. But? It did.

And that’s the point to most of the trials — and even the bigger tribulations — in my life: they do pass. It just sometimes takes them forever, and the process is pretty painful in the meantime.

via google

via google

Still, big sky mind is the rule: the clouds come, the clouds go. Only the sky remains.

The next time pain intrudes — whether the physical ache & nausea of food poisoning, or the wrenching tears of grief, or the sharp pangs of unwanted loneliness, remember: they’re all clouds. Like salmonella, they will pass. Treat them w/ proper attention — rest, rehydration. And then get back up, and prepare to watch the sky. That lovely clear sky (sometimes blue, sometimes black with night) that is always there for us, just beyond the clouds & storms we obsess over…


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