I had only slept from 11 p.m. until 4 a.m. and what’s that but a mear five hours of fitful sleep beleaguered by pain, awakened by pain. So when I lie in my recliner at 5 a.m. with preparation for mindfulness from Dave Potter’s (teacher) recommended videos, and after having read many books on mindfulness and Zen books, and The Idiot’s Guide to Buddhism, I felt well prepared for the body scan. I had listened to Jon Kabot-Zinn speaking the body scan on CDs and several other Buddhist teachers helping me scan my body with CD recordings.
I covered myself with a nice fluffy blanket, began Dave’s recording, scanned my feet, and legs with dutiful listening moved into my ankles into my calves, vaguely remember something about breathing into the areas of my body, and fell asleep not knowing the order of body parts.
I awoke rested mentally, but in much pain at 7:00 a.m with two excellent hours of sleep. So, what’s to do? Muddle through the day with my body. Mentally I am alert. Physically I am a mess. I am listing to beautiful a capella choral hymns, Shall We Gather at the River, then orchestral accompaniment of Yo-Yo Ma from The Mission film score. These beautiful sacred pieces attend to my mind and my soul. So, the body scan was successful and even prepared me for heart-warming music, and now Band of Brothers film score. Such music moving my mind and body despite excruciating pain. One, two, three, I am no crying from pain., and much of my pain is now caused by an ice-collar which is designed to alleviate pain,. If worn to tight, and too long, one can experience head pain, and that’s because I have Ankylosing Spondylitis. The excruciating disease causes pain difficult to bear, and soon I will graduate to our bed in order to listen to the body scan. And, because I am well rested, I will reap the full benefit of the body scan, breathing toe to head to full-body.