Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Heart Break for Japan

The last few nights I have had a hard time sleeping. Every time I close my eyes I see images from the scene over in Japan. My heart aches for the people who are suffering, for the families that have been destroyed, for the lives that have been changed forever. So much destruction. It gives me nightmares.

Geneen Roth talks about a meditation that she learned in her book Women, Food and God:

"I heard a meditation years ago in which a teacher suggested that we think about what people who had recently died would give to be sitting where we were. To be sitting in any body, in any room. He said, 'Think of what they would give to have just one more moment inside this physical form, these arms, these legs, this beating heart and no other.' I gathered that the dead to whom he referred didn't really care about the size of anyone's thighs."

Thinking about the tragedy in Japan has made me feel that often the things we struggle with during the day (like the size of our thighs) is trivial in the big scheme of things. It is humbling to realize that if a catastrophe hit I would crave just a few more moments of my family regardless of my appearance. Our bodies are a gift from God, but we rarely treat them as such. Instead we spend time, money, and energy trying to force our bodies to fit a standard that is not realistic. We spend hours, days, weeks, months fretting over our failure to weigh a certain weight, or wear a certain size.

Our troubles are real. Our problems are important to us. Even the trivial ones. But sometimes it is valuable to step back and understand that what really counts, what is really important has nothing to do with our appearance and everything to do with how we use our bodies for good.

I snuck into my son's room last night in the middle of the night when I wasn't sleeping. I picked him up and held him in my arms while he slept. I paid close attention to the weight of his body against mine, and I thanked my Heavenly Father that I had a body to hold my son against. I thanked Him that I was able to even have a son. I felt sorry for the time I have wasted feeling bad about my body, especially since the birth of my son. What a gift, these bodies. We could never experience a hug or a physical touch. We wouldn't be able to smell a rose or know when rain was coming by the smell outside. We would miss so much.

My heart is aching for Japan. I'm thankful for the human race and the thousands of people rushing to the aid of those who are suffering. It always warms my heart to see how the world responds to a catastrophe. If you are wanting to help as well I'll refer you to The Beauty of Different where Karen outlines places for donations and aid.

At this time I am also thankful for my knowledge of the after life and that families are eternal. If you would like to learn more about what I believe go here.

Take today to revel in the world around you. Remember your 5 senses. Enjoy your family. Take the time to do something good with your body and enjoy that you have such a gift.

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