I wake up and it is 3 a.m. I shuffle into the bathroom and quickly return to my bed, taking a sip of water before climbing back in and nestling down into the covers. I whisper my nighttime mantra, which usually takes me sweetly back to sleep: SA TA NA MA. I hear my clock chime at 3:30. Uh-oh.
Not to worry. I roll onto my back and do a gentle body-awareness meditation that starts in my mouth and travels through my entire body. I seldom make it past my shoulders. As I reach my toes and hear the clock chime 4 a.m. uh-oh becomes a deep sigh. I relax into pranayama (conscious breathing) and decide a guided meditation designed to promote restful sleep is probably the answer. I keep my iPad next to my bed with the meditation ready. I set it up, relax into my pillow and breathe and go for it.
At 5 a.m. I open my windows and let the cool air in. Cicadas are singing and I smile as I decide to meditate on sound and sensation. Turning within I am present and aware of oneness and peace. I rest in each moment not thinking, just being. Slowly I emerge into a more body-aware state and it is just before 6 a.m. It occurs to me that I have been meditating in one way or another for 2 1/2 hours. This thought occurs to me:
Wow! That’s amazing. Does this make me a meditation master?
Nope, but it does mean I can get up frustration-free and remain pleasantly sane through this day!!