When I woke up this morning, my toe was still numb. I got up, did my breath work and headed out to urgent care. By all accounts it is a minor case of frostbite, effecting a small area of one toe. As long as it doesn't get worse, I should be able to keep the toe. Now, all I can do is wait.
Waiting requires patience. Waiting opens up time for regret and shame and guilt. What I could have done. What I should have done. What people will think. All these thoughts have been a part of my patience.
So why didn't I go put my boots on when I started to see signs of trouble? It was that question that really got things rolling.
I started thinking about why I have been barefoot for the past ten years. It was about connection. Being barefoot helps me stay connected to the moment I am in. It is not about getting people's attention or suffering when it gets cold. And it is certainly not about ignoring my physical experience.
So why I didn't do anything?
Because I put what I was trying to accomplish ahead of taking care of myself. I put my expectations for myself ahead of what has actually happening to my foot. I allowed my ego to take over and distract me from the moment I was in.
Now I am back to this moment, and I have another choice to make. I can let the pain I feel right now be a reminder of what I didn't do, or I can allow it to be a testament to what I can do now. If I am acting consistently with my intentions, I will be paying attention to this moment. I will be using this pain as a reminder to take care of me. I will be keeping my toe warm and doing what I can to heal. I will be directing my energy into this moment, not the past or the future, or my imaginings of what might happen next.
Shame and guilt and regret will not serve me, regardless of what happens. The best I can do for me is to be here, now, in the midst of the effects of all of my actions. What happens next is not for me to know, so I can let it go.