In the Pocket / by Michelle Cowan

Someone told me something interesting this week: If we don't know exactly why we are where we are and why we're doing what we're doing, we’re probably in the right place.

This flies in the face of what I've believed for years. I thought that a feeling of certainty meant I was on the right track, but I'm beginning to think I was wrong. 

I've been categorically unsuccessful at guiding myself to happiness and contentment for years, despite many methodical (and less than methodical) plans and schemes. I'm smart.  I'm a good problem solver.  I should be able to find the best path, right?

Not so much. In recovery, my work is not to uncover the right path. My job is to be fully present in this moment, to develop and nurture my connection with a higher power, to do a daily personal inventory, and to take the steps that my higher power lays out in front of me one after the other.

If I do those things, I often find myself in places that make little sense. But they are usually places that feel… somehow… okay. If I had made my own way, things would make sense.  I would know what happened and how I got there.  When I let go and let something greater than myself carve out my path, it's a bit disorienting. But it's so much richer than the security of being able to tie together all the pieces.

How much more delightful life is when it doesn't make sense!  Sense is boring.  Sense gives me security, but it's bland.

Interestingly, when I look back on those moments of disorientation, they make sense. They make a beautiful sense. That is comfort enough for me.

This past month has been one of looking inward and staying connected with HP (my higher power).  I've managed to integrate mindfulness into my daily habits better than ever before. 

I've noticed that I stop more frequently throughout my days, letting questions come up like, "Why am I doing this?  Is this what I should be doing? How do I feel right now?"  Time and time again, the answer is that I feel good in the moment.  I feel good.  I feel secure.  And that's all that matters. I move on, through the thoughts, just like I do during meditation.

I can feel confused and unsure but also good.  I can have no idea where I'm going or why I'm doing what I'm doing and still know I'm doing the right thing.

It has taken many years to get more familiar with this feeling.  I call it being "in the pocket." When I'm in flow and feel wholly safe and loved, I'm "in the pocket."  I live for that feeling.  It makes everything and everywhere safe.  I'm being carried through circumstances that make little sense to me, but I am on the path I'm supposed to be on. The only way to get off-track is to get out of touch with HP.

I might ask:  Why am I in this class?  Why am I taking this drive?  Why did I decide to walk outside?  Why am I calling this person?  Why am I choosing to sit and do nothing when I have 20 things I could be doing?  Why am I drawing this picture?  Why am I sitting down at the piano?

The answers don't matter.  What matters is that I really live those moments.  And if I do, I'll enjoy every piece of my life… and also move out of each piece at just the right time.