My mind is a neighborhood I try not to go into alone.

-Annie Lamott

 I find refuge in this quote right now! My mind is a bit of a mess at the moment–in response to the many changes happening in my life: my rabbi moved to another state, my youngest is starting high school and my eldest leaves tomorrow for university. Yes, change is part of life, yes I want the best for those I love and care for, but change is really hard…and it can set my mind speeding in some pretty destructive and negative directions.

I’m not going to offer any pithy responses to change or grief; these kinds of comments can actually make matters worse. Rather, I think the best I can offer is a reminder that our thoughts at any given time do not define us. They are part of the experience of a much deeper being that can hold sadness and despair and fear and even hopelessness. I cling to that deep ocean of being that is who I am…even in those very hard moments.

The practice today is just to breathe…to imagine myself as this deep ocean—staying, remaining trough the various storms of life, and remembering that, as Annie Lamott so beautifully reminds us, that our minds are oftentimes places that we need the love and support of others to explore.

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