The first thing I do each morning is recite a lengthy gratitude list. Occasionally I acknowledge my thick, manageable hair, or the wood floors in our cozy home. But most often, and especially lately, I am grateful for my quarantine mates: my husband of nearly 30 years; our delightfully entertaining 25-year old son; and his lovely close friend-turned-girlfriend. I give thanks our marriage survived several tumultuous years. If a fortune teller had told me that in the year 2020 there would be a global pandemic AND I’d be happily quarantined with my loving, attentive, and sweet husband, I’m not sure which part of the prediction would be harder to believe.
There is much joy and laughter as we play this new game of “house” or more colloquially our “Reality TV Show” with our own motto: “We’re a family that helps each other.”
I am so blessed to be quarantined with
three smart, funny, and loving people
oh, right, and one adorable fluffy Bichon Frise.
There is nothing like being quarantined with the eminent threat of death to put things into perspective. What do we really need? What do we truly desire? Who do we want to be stranded with in our home during quarantine?
Although I’m conditioned to stay in Eckhart Tolle’s present moment there’s a part of me that knows I could have been alone during COVID-19. Just one rash decision wrought from anger and a wounded pride would have proved devastating. I feel deeply grateful to not have chosen the path of divorce by reacting with my previously inflated ego. After said ego was thoroughly destroyed, it eventually, and quite unexpectedly, transformed into a strong sense of pride. That ego of mine seems to always find a way into the spotlight! I kept a family together.
Bearing and surviving the fatal crush of the ego
is one of the first and hardest steps towards forgiveness.
I cannot stress enough
how crucial it is to get past this devastating loss of self.
There is also nothing like a good man, who screwed up, and is profoundly grateful to have been forgiven. My husband is behaving like a dreamboat, an affectionate award-winning partner. Instead of being nasty, cold, and MIA, he is sweet, attentive and always home (even before COVID-19). But his transformation wasn’t that cut and dry. I did a lot of work on myself to affect these 180-degree changes. Besides the proud ego, I was anxious, reactionary, and possessed a slew of deep-seated, well-conditioned behavioral patterns. I had become dependent and needy, eventually playing the victim to his annoyed and rolling eyes. And last but not least, I was materialistically spoiled.
Five years ago we began repairing our marriage after the trauma of my husband’s infidelity. It wasn’t until I read Esther Perel’s The State of Affairs I realized I had been under the spell of “trauma denial.” It was all right under my nose, yet there was too much to lose if I let myself notice. While writing It’s Not Too Late Baby, a Kundalini Love Story, I painstakingly navigated through my life and the ordeal of the betrayal. It’s a story of finding the strength to elevate, transform, and truly open my heart. The little girl, with way too much love to give, finally had her shining moment to use all that extra affection when and where it was most needed!
My husband and I began practicing Kundalini Yoga together 4-1/2 years ago, something I am continuing most mornings online, when he is working in the home office. Up until this past Saturday morning he hadn’t taken any classes in about a month. Aptly, Saturday’s class was all about the power of gratitude, and the Kriya chosen by the teacher was to strengthen the Neutral Mind*.
If he skipped so many weeks of classes, why hadn’t he slipped into any less than loving behavior?
As long as I keep taking the
Kundalini Yoga classes he reaps the benefits.
I’ve realized we are now, more than ever, deeply affected by each other’s moods. There’s a newfound, honest, soul-to-soul connection where before I used to feel like he didn’t care all that much. As long as I’m taking the Kundalini Yoga classes and practicing my meditations, we get along great and he’s a love! We play games, even musical duets, clean, shop, and enjoy spending time with “the kids.” Notice I didn’t list “cook.” Hey, it’s still reality, no? The rolling eyes have been replaced by kind and caring ones, helping plug or connect devices to speakers for my many online classes and meetings.
While we’re on the subject of reality, he gets quiet and shuts down when there are challenges with work, which unfortunately tempt me back to the betrayal. If he had been a “forthcoming” sort, I probably would have never written the book in the first place. Enter the breathing or pranayama skills learned from Kundalini Yoga which ease anxiety and make us less reactionary.
Kundalini Yoga keeps us calm because it rewires the nervous system. It is a combination of breathing, meditating, physical exercise and mantra that work together effecting significant changes to all systems in the body.
Before Kundalini the only mantra I used was
“Panic First – Think Later!”
Now there are soothing mantras to sing
in lieu of perseverating and worrying!
After the lengthy morning gratitude list I perform an 11-minute breathing meditation designed to calm the parasympathetic nervous system. In other words, gone are the days of freaking out. I don’t even think about panicking! The yoga practice has helped us both recondition from undesirable patterns and habits.
Here’s a list of what I do every day to stay calm and keep peace in the house during the Coronavirus Pandemic:
- Reciting Gratitude List – According to The Law Of Attraction, Kundalini and many other practices expressing gratitude will attract more abundance and give us more blessings for our gratitude list
- 11-Minute Breathing Exercise using Interval Timer – HIIT Workouts – One Minute Breath I started with 16 second intervals and am now up to 18 seconds – 20 second intervals being the ultimate goal to becoming less reactionary
- Kundalini Yoga Online Classes through Kundalini Yoga of Long Island – calms the nervous and endocrine systems
- Bringing healthy snacks to my husband who is working from home – thoughtfulness goes a long way
- Cooking healthy meals for the family – how I show love
- Refraining from blurting out opinions, interrupting, and chiming in on conversations – to be sensitive to others
- Taking deep breaths, pausing, and softening my energy
- Going for dog walks – for Vitamin D sunshine and fresh air
- Eating meals together – strengthen family ties
- Continuing exercise as much as possible – to release happy endorphins
The only way I’m spoiled now is by his love and attention. I think he may be feeling extremely grateful too. It’s true that a little kindness can go a very long way.
Wishing you love, good health, compassion, and inner strength.
Wishing you a Happy Passover and Happy Easter.
Sending out special thanks and gratitude to those working tirelessly to help get us through COVID-19.
*The neutral mind allows us to see the big picture
to be proactive, not reactive, and rise above
our own agendas to more readily access our souls.”
Theresa Banks, Owner, Kundalini Yoga of Long Island
Eva G Kane
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#quarantinelife #infidelity #survivinginfidelity #self-help #gratitude #happiness #personaldevelopment #live #meditation #pranayama #breathing #neutralmind