Attachments to rituals. I’m looking at that right now. Grabbing my cards at 2 am on a Saturday night to help with a decision. That’s going to help me to get to sleep. Wait. What am I writing about? This coronavirus scare has my energy off a bit. Should I buy more toilet paper? (just kidding). No that’s not the problem, although my gosh one does begin to wonder if the stores don’t restock what a mess it could make of things. Yeah, let’s not go there. It’s the gym, you know? That’s what’s got me out of bed so my mind will shush up about it. As the fear began to loom about the virus and with a strong desire to do my part for my fellows, I skipped my gym time on Friday. Yet, today I dashed in after notices on the gym’s website that they are taking all these precautions with cleaning and providing extra wipes and sanitizers. I felt guilty doing it but I was craving cardio and did a vigorous hour on the spin bike. The crowd at the gym might have been a bit smaller than usual today, but not that much. YET, now the governor of our state has closed all the schools for 2-weeks. The gym did shut down certain gatherings and is limiting the number of members allowed in classes and our library has canceled all group type meetings and activities for 2 months! I’m taking my temperature each day. I felt like my luck was being pushed by getting a few more groceries the other day. I’m rationing the stray cat’s food (there are 5 of them!) and find myself holding back from eating what’s in the freezer and cupboards. Hey, and that’s a good thing. I’ve gained near to 5 pounds over the winter.
Yeah and now I’m looking at giving up my gym time and cringe when envisioning . . . well, let’s say that its likely to be another damn test in letting go and non-attachment. Contrast that with the PBS Evening News weekend edition report from Italy where some people are dying in their homes and they are being left there due to fears of collecting the bodies and spreading the virus further. Many older adults are being triaged and not treated due to not enough respirator equipment to keep them alive. The entire country is being told to stay at home unless an emergency and the police are enforcing by violators being jailed or fined. Imagine being given a citation for being out of your home. Intense and really scary! And then there’s me boohooing about missing my workouts! I feel ashamed. Like many people are doing, however, there’s that part of the mind that says, nawh, that’s not going to happen here; everywhere else maybe, but not here, not us, not me.
I’m certainly not alone with this struggle right? Now I want to delete this blog feeling ashamed to even be writing it! But, full disclosure. I just completed a 40-minute vow meditation — vowing to sit in complete stillness without moving at all. In this deep metta-meditation, the concentrated focus involved in not moving a muscle, and the tonglen (exchanging self for others) were all offered (the merit and energy) for any and all who may be in fear or in any way suffering especially in relation to this coronavirus. Point being just had the thought that maybe tonight’s earlier meditation will balance things out with my selfish gym concerns. Who knows.
Lifting weights 3 times a week in a group choreographed releases is addictive! But if I spread a virus as a carrier without knowing (they say you can have it and not know it), then oh no! I better not go. Right? I take my temperature every day and feel fine, but still . . . right?
Anyway, do you get the feeling that the authorities know more than they are telling us about the virus? I watch the news but still feel there’s something missing there. Here’s a gross report. One TV reporter said that the virus came from bats and then tonight I read about it originating from snakes. Ugh. Let’s let those thoughts go; shouldn’t have mentioned it.
Stress is not good for anybody, right? Therefore, I must stop stressing about this question and my attachment to the spin bike and the weight lifting classes must be handled.
Right; well then. A quickie. Turning to my cards. Yes or No spread. Is it in everyone’s best interest, including my own, if I avoid the gym until they sound the all-clear? Yikes; That could be months! There go my mental withdrawal symptom alarms at the very thought of that!
Such an oxymoron, right? Going to a gym and working out is supposed to be a healthy thing to do!
Right. Anyway. The cards. Okay. Here we go . . . No, let me add timing to this question. I will ask for one week and then decide weekly thereafter. Here we go . . .
The revised question is this: Is it in everyone’s best interest, including my own if I do NOT go to the gym for one week? Yes or No?
(Ace in the 3rd pile of 13 cards is the strongest indicator of YES and the Ace of Swords in the 1st pile of 13 adds to it.
The middle pile of 13 cards displays the Three of Cups which adds to the meaning.
The first impression in seeing that card was about how being with the other women (oops, guys in the class too) lifting weights to music week after week is group power and fun. And there’s the community and bonding stuff going on. I see this card as a validation of the question that is being asked… women lifting cups, bonding. Me lifting weights and doing the same at the gym. Get it? It’s like the cards are telling me that they hear the question, loud and clear.
But with this decision, the Three of Cups card also indicates that there are joyous possibilities that can come from my withdrawal. I will find a way to do cardio and increase at-home yoga to not lose my fitness level. THAT will be a challenge but what can I say? I may actually really enjoy that — yeah, well, keeping an open mind, I will re-asses in one week.
Done and done! Right now I’m going to say that I’m going to bed. My mind will shut up now. The decision’s been made.
My heart extends to all who are suffering from the effects of this pandemic. May you, reader, be safe and protected.
PS — image at the top of this post was a random photo but that looks like one of our group power moves, actually chest press is my favorite and my bar is loaded with 3 plates too and we lay on the bench just as the people in the photo; probably my 3 plates are not the same weight as the people in the photo but looks the same anyway… yeah, it’s late and I’m not making sense now. Goodnight; didn’t intend to go on and on so long.