I'm all about trying new ways to relax, so when I heard about a sound bath event in my area, I signed up hoping to be transported to a tranquil place in my mind. Little did I know that this experience would be jarring, but powerful just the same.
My imagination prepared me for a light dinging of bells and perhaps a gentle gong. My fellow bathers had come prepared with blow-up mattresses, fuzzy blankets, and silk eye masks, for heaven's sake. What I experienced, instead, was being trapped in sound so loud that I felt like I was on the verge of a panic attack. The reverb was so loud that I could not sustain a thought. In the first five minutes, I was convinced that I would have to leave. I almost reached out to my friend nearby to feel more grounded but decided instead to surrender. Isn't that what meditators tell us to do?
As a teacher and mother, I pride myself in the decisions I make and the actions I take but don't do so well when I'm in situations out of my control. I was being bathed in inescapable sound that forced me to go on the journey of the healer - not in my own direction. Instead of fighting the noise inside and outside of my head, I let go of the tension that had built up and allowed myself to follow the path of sound. It painted the walls with joys, fears, sorrows, and hope and when it was over, I felt as if I had just experienced a lifetime of emotion- evoking my own memories of life. I did not leave relaxed, but contemplative. It was the perfect exercise for me in letting go.
We often deal with changes at school and in our home lives that require us to follow a path that feels out of our control. How do you cope in these situations?