Death, Meditation, & Travel

This morning I had a near-death experience.

It is something that happens to me more often than I’d like. I woke up with an upset stomach and it quickly progressed until I felt like I was dying. I can’t describe it any other way, but it is scary, and involves and incredible discomfort in being in my body – hot flashes, sweat, cold chills, nausea, crawling skin…

I couldn’t care for Annalise properly in this state, so I went to get Eric (who was sleeping in Aden’s room). On the way, I blacked out and collapsed.

I came around in Aden’s room. Eric was beside me and was scared too. He said he thought I might be having seizures because my eyes were open and my body was shaking. I couldn’t remember anything after deciding to leave my bed.

By midday, I was fine, except that my back and ribcage were in a lot of pain from the fall.

I felt a bit like hiding in a cave the rest of the day (or week) but instead went to the Shamanic meditation I’d been planning to attend.

At the meditation, I set my intention on releasing fear of illness and death.

This is big for me, especially with our plans to travel with our kids. My first black-out of this kind happened while extremely ill in Cambodia, and I’ve often gotten quite sick while traveling. I harbor a lot of fear about taking my children to foreign countries and exposing them to illness and hazards that aren’t as prevalent here.

I also want to address this because I think somewhere inside I must be terrified of being sick, which may be causing or contributing to the near-death experiences on some subconscious level. Perhaps that is why my blood pressure drops in these situations, making me lose consciousness.

Isn’t it wild how much influence our subconscious has over our lives?

During the meditation, it became clear to me that my goal is to be fully present in my body, to experience what life has to offer, including both the depths of suffering and the heights of ecstasy.

To be quite honest, losing consciousness is an amazing (though somewhat terrifying) experience to have. I imagine it is not that different than truly dying, and in that way, I am glad to have gotten so many chances to go through it. During the meditation, I resolved to savor the next time I feel I am nearing death.

Just like I savored my children’s births.

The intensity is quite similar, and perhaps many connections could be drawn between birthing and dying.

And there is so much more depth to relish in this raw and grounded life I am choosing. Whether it be meditation, manual labor, illness, sex, dance, or death – I want to be present in the moment.

Speaking of sex, Eric and I went to a club last week where we made love in a cage beside the stage where women were being lit on fire. BDSM is not normally our thing, but I think part of the adventure of life is to experiment and try new things.

After all, I don’t want to live in a bubble nor do I want to raise my kids in one. I want to live a full, raw, and real life. My experiences this week and especially the Shamanic meditation helped me connect with that very basic need.