On my return journey, I was cruising along in Indiana, grooving to Alllman Bros. on the radio and chanting the lovingkindness chant. Had to giggle since I know most teachers would tell me playing the Allmans while chanting is a bad idea. And then I smiled from the inside out; for me something about that combo did everything I needed to keep me shifted into a good space instead of drifting into travel trauma mode.
Slowed down a bit by hours of rain, I slipped to the outer edges of Indianapolis minutes before rush hour (not the plan) and found myself shifting the chant to “Om Gum Ganapatayei Namaha” (chant to Ganesha, destroyer of obstacles). I’m not much of a scholar of these things but I’m pretty sure it wasn’t intended to remove traffic obstacles (!?!); regardless, I flew through with relative ease, still listening to oldies, smiling to myself again at my new rocking and chanting spiritual practice.
Even though the trips in both directions took longer than they should have I arrived with less fatigue and pain than usual. Amazing how much energy we pour into angst and how much our bodies react to tension. For much of my journey I’ve been too ill to catch those kinds of nuances so it was powerful to feel what a difference it made to keep holding my center.
In this case as I’ve deconstructed the issues/reasons behind all those hooks for travel trauma, they’ve all been traceable to me just picking up the habits of my parents (assuming that I’m not still missing some deep seated drama). I wove their phobias and furies together into my own version, but it added up to a whole chain of beliefs about travel and how I should react to every circumstance, including a vague dread from the get go. Because they were just habits, it was fairly easy to shift myself into a different place just by noticing my thinking and what triggered it and deciding that I didn’t want to choose that any more.
A lot of teachings make it sound like it should always be that easy. I’ve found that when you’re dealing with issues that are deeply embedded in your childhood and/or being, it often takes quite a bit more than just noticing to both find them and to shift them. I encourage you if you are looking at your beliefs and examining the origins to be kind to yourself if it takes time or seems difficult because not every step of the journey is as easy as some would say. Every step is worth the effort though. When you reach the point where the places with hooks jump into your notice because you’re otherwise serene, life is good.