NewYears IED

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Creating Space under Pressure

I'm not particularly excited to write this post.

The past three nights have been rather sleepless, maybe because last weekend I had a meltdown.

Yeah, not a good way to start a post, but I've noticed a few things these past couple of days that make this experience useful for training.

The main reason I find practicing mindfulness so useful is the space it helps me create between the sometimes crazy crap in my head and me.

So even though I had one of my meltdowns and ended up huddled next to the bedroom closet, part of me was able to watch what was happening.

This meltdown didn't last very long but it was intense. During one moment I had this image of fuzzy dark pressure taking up all of my mind. Nothing made sense, I couldn't think, it was dark and all consuming.

The above image is what my meltdown looked like to me at its most intense moment.

I remember trying to focus on my breath. I remember covering my ears and hearing the sound of my breath the way you hear sounds under water.

That seemed to help and I remember feeling a bit more space.

The room came back into focus and I gained a little more space.

When I came out of it and the pressure subsided, I immediately became ashamed.

Fast as you can blink I had a thousand thoughts storm my mind.

I shouldn't have done this.

Now I'm back were I started.

I'm weak.

I'm not a man.

Well, right away, I started making space between that too.

Thinking about this post and analyzing this last meltdown has given me a better understanding of my inner realm.

This one wasn't nearly as bad as times past. It didn't take me days to get over it either.

Yeah, I had a meltdown, but I'm at peace with it.

This post was guided by the 33th stanza of the Art of Peace, a book written by Morihei Ueshiba , the founder and creator of the Martial Art, Aikido.

Armor Down now has a website. Check it out.

Like the AD Facebook page and I'll send you a great book about Mindfulness!



  1. If you had it to do all over again - serving our country - would you?

    I'll admit to a meltdown or two. I try to stave mine (the impetus) away.

    Can you? Should you?

  2. Would definitely do it over again. It took a little while but I now no longer fear the "weaker" parts of myself. Nor do I try to eliminate them.

    I think that's pretty cool.

    Thanks for interacting with me through this Blog, Anita.


  3. You're welcome.

    You are my source to lives/jobs/duties/consequences/rewards/etc. (of vets) that are hard to comprehend.

    My father (passed in 1999) served in WWII - never talked about it (to me); my stepfather in Korea - never talks about it; but my mother heard the nightmares.

    Good that you're talking about it and using the images.