I had known for many years that I had become a victim of time. I always felt that there was never enough time to meet all the deadlines that life and my profession demanded. ‘Tempus fugit’ and ‘time waits for no-one’ were haunting conceptual spectres which dominated my life and, in spite of being clever enough to work out some excellent time management strategies that were much commended by my colleagues, the truth my body revealed, indicated that I was exhausting myself with my breathless and compulsive ‘hamster on a wheel’ existence.
My body no longer resonated with the daily sleep/waking cycle and I could not sleep without medication. This was due to neither caffeine nor alcohol consumption because I disliked both. It was attributable solely to time and work pressures; pressures I responded to by pushing myself and by analysing everything with extreme levels of mental energy, always with an eye on the clock. I was living like the manic, breathless White Rabbit in Alice in Wonderland as a complete victim of time.
This changed when I was introduced to the idea of living in and to a rhythm. Re-connecting with rhythm was like finding the most essential part of me that I had inexplicably completely lost until I began to make some very simple changes.
The first step in reclaiming my natural rhythm was to breathe a gentle breath and feel my own naturally gentle energy. This offered me a choice in stressful situations – I could choose to engage with the stress of a demanding situation or I could choose to breathe my own breath and remain in my natural rhythm. This diminished the stress of work demands enormously and my ability to remain unperturbed was commented on by many colleagues.
I no longer felt a victim of time and deadlines or indeed, a manager of them. I simply began to be unaffected by them.
I next learned that by adjusting the timing of my sleep/wake cycle, my body could re-connect with a more natural sleep pattern. Almost immediately I was able to quit the sleep medication I had been taking for over 10 years by simply having a non-stimulating wind-down routine in the evening and going to bed considerably earlier than had been my habit. I wake up much earlier also and with a gentle vitality I have never experienced previously. I found more often I could take my time to do things, and at a pace which was far more loving and supportive of myself and my body. For the first time in many years, I was able to take pleasure in living in my own body.
I was then delighted to be introduced to the menopausal rhythm which is governed by the cycles of the full moon. Just like its sister rhythm, the menstrual cycle, the full moon cycle has its rhythms of expression and discarding as well as a natural pattern of activity and rest. It is an ongoing joy to align and explore how these lymphatic rhythms feel in my body and relate to what is going on in my life on a monthly basis. Far from being a time to be consigned to the scrapheap, the menopausal rhythm reveals to me the myriad ways in which I can deepen my relationship to myself as a living, rhythmic being.
By connecting with the cycles of the full moon, I have experienced a deep confirming of how I am in a rhythmic relationship with rhythms that are very much larger than I, and oh so much more expansive than our tiny wee concepts of time.
Living as a rhythmic being allows me now to observe how I am moment by moment, daily, monthly and yearly. I now see each year as an opportunity to deepen my relationship with myself through living a naturally rhythmic life.
I still work in a very busy profession but I have learned to take moments to re-connect with my rhythms. No longer am I the victim of time and its apparent pressures. Time is now my instrument to develop these natural rhythms within my body and to feel the harmony that is there when I participate in cycles that are greater than me, and yet somehow, are mine to claim.
I have a profound sense that there are yet more rhythms to unfold and cycles with which to engage.
It all feels so lovely; I love rhythm and rhythm certainly loves me. Living as a rhythmic being has allowed me to change my relationship with time completely and to set aside my former ‘hamster on a wheel’ existence. The more I work on my rhythm, the more I master relationship with time and the more I develop my relationship with me.
I am a rhythmic being and I live in a rhythmic world.