Initially, the concept of meditation represented a remote state of being I might one day aspire to. Most days I was more focused on survival than enlightenment. I was diagnosed as a type 1 diabetic when I was 9, and I was an extremely brittle one at that. My childhood, not uniquely, was filled with lots of drama. My way of coping with this was to become astoundingly impervious to the chaos around me. I developed an apathy that I carried into relationships and finally into an equally tempestuous marriage. Any buzz on the spiritual tip was welcomed but most likely drug induced. It was as if I didn’t count my actual experiences as anything connected to spirit. It was as if I had to be different than who I was, and THEN I would start to meditate. I had my son in 1993 and though I gestated and nursed him for a year without drugs or alcohol, I don’t think there was even a day between weaning him off the boob and diving back into the bottle myself. I sobered up in 1996. I left my marriage and trudged down a different path. I seemed to be ruled by the ups and downs of diabetes. The rise and fall of my blood sugar continued to be downright unpredictable despite rigid diet, diligent, exercise regimes and supplemental, alternative treatments, but it strengthened my discipline, and I slowly became more comfortable in my own skin.
I did ALL of it in an attempt to heal myself, as if that healing was my spiritual connection. Yoga, acupuncture, breathwork, NA + AA step work, Ayervedic diet, chelation of heavy metals. I removed my metal fillings, visited John of God in Brazil, soma sessions, celibacy, vitamin pushes, laying of hands, speaking in tongues, reading of cards, fasts, raw foods, healers, psychics and ayahuasca ceremonies. One time, my boyfriend and I even agreed to put ourselves in large plastic bags filled with mineralized goop, be immersed in a hot water tub that spun and have alien implants picked off of us by this kooky wild eyed scientist who ran some sort of laser beam up and down our bodies (naked bodies) when we emerged. Let’s just keep that one between us.
Meditation for me doesn’t really resemble the lotus position and long Oms with incense burning. Being present in whatever task I’m taking on is meditation for me when it becomes a mindful offering. I meditate while I cook, write, or play music. I practice presence when I parent and negotiate the ongoing divorced parent’s extravaganza in relation to raising a kid. I try my best to navigate the relationship hills and valleys, and chew the cud while finding the family values in my own tribe of gypsies. It’s all an exercise in tolerance, compassion and humility. Most of my alternative healing exploits have been a constructive stroke for me finding peace of mind. Ayahuasca ceremonies are high on that list. I’m still not sure where my prayers go to, but I feel pretty positive we’re closer to God than the fishes are to the ocean, and when we praise the beauty of God, it’s an opportunity to fill our soul with light and joy. I’d say, as long as the intent is productive, there is no wrong way…
Deborah Falconer is a songwriter on the verge of completing her 3rd album. She has co-partnered with Robbi Chong on the screenplay “Softly, Softly Catchy Monkey” and is rounding 3rd base on her 2nd with Robbi and Amadea West. Her 17 1/2 son has urged her towards the ultimate goal of making the truly perfect turkey sandwich, and she is, of course…awesomely diabetic.