First thing is first – for some odd reason that I am yet to solve, my beautiful fiancée decided to marry me and now, we are officially Mr. and Mrs. Russo! After a very long and painful two years, her and I have finally deserted the trenches and begun our married life together. So as I have questioned in the past – what is your excuse?
During the planning of this wedding and beyond, we had gone through a significant amount of stress (please let me be clear – Leah did 99% of the work and did an UNBELIEVABLE job as you will soon be able to tell when the photos become public). Days were flying by until Sunday, the 28th of July 2019, and I wanted to make sure that she was going to be the happiest person in the world that day. All of this stress took away something that I have been practicing since the cancer introduced itself to me back in 2014.
Slowing down. So before you read the rest of this blog post, please stop and take three deep breaths – I will tell you when. Ready? Go.
Welcome back! How did that feel? Were those the first breaths you focused on today? Mine too.
Ever since I was diagnosed, I have attempted to slow down my life because I was unsure how much life I actually had left. However, I have been interested in the practice of slowing down just to reduce everyday stress. As I have mentioned in previous posts, I am not the master of these practices, so please do not assume that. At times, I do not even recognize the present moment until I am lying in bed at night trying to fall asleep, which to me, means I wasted the day due to stress.
Of course I stress about my health, but you do too sometimes, no? How about your job? Your personal life? Bank account? Lack of sleep? Unfortunately, this country has introduced this stress to its residents, and I am stumped on how it will ever be solved. I do my best to slow things down and focus only on what I am doing at this very moment, and that is writing this blog post. I hope you are trying your hardest to simply read this post, and nothing more.
As I have said in the past, I hope you try to meditate as well. For ten minutes, five minutes, even one minute. It significantly helps to slow down your life. There is an online meditation by Tony Brady (not Tom Brady unfortunately) entitled “Slow Down and Stop” that I suggest you listen to. I personally love it. Other acts of slowing things down, for me anyways, is driving without the radio on, walking a bit more slowly, slowing down with that keyboard (despite the speed-typing taught to us in elementary school), reading slowly, eating slowly, and enjoying that coffee in the morning.
My mind races. I sometimes eat so aggressively while watching television that I literally realize that I did not even recognize the taste. I occasionally drink that coffee so quickly that I am unsure if it even woke me up or not. I often do not recognize how nice that shower feels in the morning. All in all, why would you believe this person writing this blog post about slowing down when he fails on it constantly?
Because it is a lifelong training that nobody ever truly gets a 100% A+ on. It is simply a practice that will help to reduce stress in your life. If it does not – I will allow you to yell at me (just do not hurt me please!).
Please slow down.