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An Intention for These Times: Presence, Clarity, Compassion, and Creativity

Refocus: Reflections on Life’s Journey. Although no longer practicing medicine and not offering medical advice, I am grateful for a recurring opportunity to connect with you as a fellow human being on this journey called “life.”

This pandemic is not the first, nor is it likely the last, to threaten the survival of the human species.  Throughout history, humanity has faced natural disasters (floods, fires, earthquakes, famines), human disasters (wars, attempted genocides, and other human atrocities), and/or a combination of intended/ unintended consequences of human activity (pollution, oil spills, nuclear meltdowns, toxic environmental burdens).   It is likely that we can all name someone in our extended families whose lives were turned upside down by one or more of these events.

The current pandemic, the moment to moment changing conditions, all the unknowns, the barrage of information and updates – can feel totally overwhelming!  When I am overwhelmed, my fight and flight system is on overdrive.  I can’t think straight.  Making a decision or knowing what to do can feel impossible.

My intention for these days: Presence, Clarity, Compassion, and Creativity.  

Presence – May I take time to notice my feet touching the ground.  May I take three of four slow deep breaths and notice how I am feeling now.  Right now.  May I see all my swirling emotions and chaotic thoughts – acknowledge them and give them a moment or two to settle.  May I tune in to my “heart” and connect in gratitude with those life-giving relationships in my life. 

Clarity – As my thoughts and feelings settle out and I become more present.  May I see clearly that which is before me here and now.  May I discern if and when/ where there is something to do or to refrain from doing.  

Compassion – May I have compassion for myself, for my loved ones, and for the whole human family, and actually for all life on this planet – for we are all deeply interconnected.  Let wise compassion guide my thoughts and actions.

Creativity – And as I am fully present to Life and to the Source of Life, may I draw deeply from the well of delight and creativity with ways to see each inconvenience and limitation as an opportunity.  Yes, this is a challenge.  It’s not fair.  It is hard.  We are all touched by these times.  We may not escape unscathed.  We are in this together.

In the midst of this pandemic, we have seen evidence of those trying to take advantage of panic.  We are seeing the heavy toll this is taking on our healthcare providers and the healthcare systems.  And we are also seeing people taking care of each other, people being responsible even when inconvenienced, and people finding ways to connect even while keeping prescribed physical distance.  Let’s take good care of ourselves, our loved ones, and all of creation.

Author
Dalinda Reese, MD Dr. Dalinda Reese is an Integrative Wellness Practitioner who has training and experience in both Mainstream Medicine and Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) modalities. She graduated from the University of Michigan Medical School in 1981 and moved to Richmond, Virginia. Following residencies and Board Certification in Internal Medicine and in Anesthesia, Dalinda practiced Anesthesia in Virginia for 20 years. In 2005 she pursued her lifelong interests in holistic health and earned a Master in Theological Studies from the University of Waterloo. She completed a Fellowship Program in Integrative Medicine (University of Arizona) and obtained certification by the American Board of Integrated Holistic Medicine In 2010. In addition, she completed training programs in Spiritual Direction and Orthomolecular Nutrition. Dalinda knows that true health requires an integration of well-being in body, mind, and spirit.

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