Reflections in My FatherThe other day I was helping my sister move out of the house she’d lived in every summer for the last 34 years. This old beach house holds a lot of emotion for my family: it is the place our father lived before he died in 1976. As we were going through photos, sentimental objects and books that we hadn’t looked at in years, I could feel stirrings in my heart that I hadn’t felt in a long time. I remembered scenes from my life with my Dad that I had forgotten and were now brought back by the photos. My sister and I kept plowing through the various boxes until we both hit a wall of exhaustion and had to stop. We wondered where the weariness came from and decided to end the work early with afternoon naps.

Upon waking up, I understood why I was so tired. Even though I had revisited some very happy old memories, processing it all took a lot of energy. My body understood, and signaled me to stop and recharge, and I happily listened.

You may not understand this mind-body connection, or even accept it, but my protocol is based on the knowledge that there is a relationship between all of life’s systems: physical, emotional, mental and spiritual. These four parts of us unite to make up the beautiful whole. Over and over I have found that when we embrace this understanding, we are happier overall.

So often, we ignore the relationship we have between the body, mind, heart and spirit, and push on. When we access the knowledge of their interrelationship, there is far more information to guide us. Now I notice how stress feels in my body, what laughter means to my spirit, the way my heart feels when it longs for connection, and how meditation feeds my mind with truth. There is an energetic cord that runs through me, enlivening each system of my body, and I pay attention to it. When I am taking care of the interconnectedness of these relationships, everything is possible.

It’s occurred to me how happy I am when I respect this balance.