Just miss the ground
I’ve started going to a psychotherapist once a week. With everything that happened when I had a chance to rest, I finally decided it would be great to fix the inside of my head. And so I’ve spent three quarters of an hour every Friday afternoon sitting in a suitably comfy chair in South Helsinki, reaching back in time.
There’s a memory I found on one of these Fridays, one that hasn’t left me alone since. I’m a child of four, maybe five, we live in a house on a hill, and our back yard is the side of the hill, growing trees, oaks maybe, or maples. And I’m running down the hill, sure-footed, not afraid of falling and hurting myself. Just running.
When I found this memory, one of living so totally in the present, so long ago – the same started to become easier for me again. With my attention completely centered on the here-and-now, letting go of everything else has become like flying in Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker series: you just have to throw yourself at the ground and miss. It’s not something to do – rather, “[y]ou have to have your attention suddenly distracted by something else when you’re halfway there, so that you are no longer thinking about falling, or about the ground, or about how much it’s going to hurt if you fail to miss it.”
There have been more and more of these ground-missing moments since I found the memory. Cycling to school on a crisp autumn morning, crossing the Ilmala railway yard with the scent of tar and iron of the brigde filling my nose; in the folk dance lesson, with R leading and me following, she’s become so good at it since we last danced together; in the bass practice room at school, I’m starting my journey toward learning archaic music, minimalist and literally long play, ten minutes to the four-bar tune and the music is starting to take control instead of me.
With these moments, now, come tears; and like Sting sings, “I’m so happy I can’t stop crying.”