I was speaking with a young man about letting go of his ideas about the future, his images of how his life 'should' be, and being present here and now.
He said, "Well Jeff, if there's only this moment, only now.... then... I'm going to kill myself".
For a moment, he had lost all hope. Suicide seemed like the logical solution.
I stayed present. Listened. Validated his pain. Entered his world. Discovering presence can be a shock to the system, can reorganise the entire psyche, release deeply buried feelings. I understand that. I've been through it.
"I understand. It can be scary to lose all your hope".
"Yes, I'm terrified".
"Where do you feel that terror? Can you feel it in your body?"
"Yes. It's burning... in my chest".
"Great. Stay there for a moment. Feel its power".
"I feel like... I want to kill someone. I feel so fucking angry with you now. You've taken away everything..."
I stayed present.
"Yes. Yes. Where do you feel that anger?"
"In my belly, my throat, my chest..."
"What does it feel like?"
"It's like... Fire. Power. Rage. Volcanic. Like... I could destroy an entire universe".
"Yes. That’s your own power. It's huge. You don't have to deny it any more, or act on it, just feel it now, let it burn, honour it".
"Wow. It's a lot".
"It's yours. Just allow it. Allow those sensations in your belly, heart, throat. Breathe into them, through them..."
"I want to scream".
"I.... I.... I FUCKING HATE LIFE!"
"I HATE LIFE! I HATE EVERYONE! I HATE MY PARENTS! I HATE YOU!"
He looks at me. Our eyes meet. He bursts into tears. He slumps, his body relaxes, he breathes deeply again. His rage had been met - for the first time ever- with love, acceptance. Something had been released, something old. Something unloveable had been embraced.
"My God. My God. For the first time in my life, honestly, for the first time, I feel like I'm... ALIVE. I feel like myself".
It's amazing, the power of just staying present. Listening. Doing less. Allowing the other to go through what they have to go through, without trying to fix or save them. Taking away false hope, leaving them with new hope. Trusting their process. Trusting life. Trusting the mysteries of love.
- Jeff Foster
Notes on Chamomile
Chamomile is one of the most ancient medicinal herbs known to womankind.
The dried flowers of chamomile contain many terpenoids and flavonoids contributing to her medicinal properties.
Chamomile is first and foremost calming—to the body and to the emotions. Roman Chamomile provides a truly soothing experience for the mind and body, but also the skin.
She has traditionally been used for such things as hay fever, inflammation, muscle spasms, menstrual disorders, insomnia, ulcers, wounds, gastrointestinal disorders and rheumatic pain
She can help lul you to sleep by decreasing feelings of stress and anxiety while promoting feelings of calm and wellbeing.
She has an anti inflammatory action- inflammation in the body rises in times of stress
Drink as a tea or cold infusion.
Use her as a compress for skin issues, including eczema
A drop or 2 of her essential oil can be added to water or beverage of choice to soothe the digestive and immune systems (really one and the same, since 80% of our immune system is in the gut). Her essential oil can of course also be used in an infuser to help calm the nervous system.
And, as is true with a lot of herbs that I mention, you can bathe with chamomile. Sip on her infusion. sprinkle in some epsom salt and really prime your body for a good night’s sleep.
Excerpt From Kevin Griffins Book Buddhism and The Twelve Steps
Rachel's Musings on functional and dysfunctional dealings with trauma.