Our trip to the Big Apple was well underway when the panic hit hard and quick. In my diligence to pack light, bringing just one small backpack for a two-day trip, I had forgotten my brush. Not just any brush, the brush! My fat, round brush with the metal center that heats and lifts my fine, limp hair to expose the full bounce potentiality on my head. Said brush is instrumental in the way I look and present myself.
Remember to grab it on the way out, I said aloud on purpose but like a wrapper in the wind, the thought was gone before the memory was made.
I sat wide-eyed in the passenger seat as my vibe plummeted from high to low once the no brush realization hit. Before speaking the utter disaster that lay ahead to my husband I caught a breath and looked at the situation. Not from being in it but from above it so that I could see its truths.
Fact: I wanted my brush.
Fact: I prayed that at our first pit stop my bag would reveal its inclusion.
Fact: My trusty mate was still under the bathroom sink.
My choices were clear. I could accept it and move on or pine away and suffer.
By all accounts this was a first world problem but the manner in which the panic arose and disappointment settled in on the projection of my immediate future, one would have thought a fate much worse than the 36-hour bun that was coming my way.
Expending my energy in such a way was doing nothing more than tying me deeper to indulge the ego. The one who wants us to suffer and keep all life in a state of impaired equilibrium. It’s the one who can make forgetting something as trivial as a brush feel as threatening as an 8.7 on the richter and wants us to believe that vanity is a viable addition to our quality as humans.
This is the utterly ridiculous nature of what we’re dealing with as inhabitants of this world. The ever convincing, I’m talking Robert Shapiro, Attorney at Law, type of convincing, “I”-ego that wants us to live in an ultimate state of self absorption. The kind of living that excludes union and contentment. It’s goal is to keep us separated from one another and to divide us on every topic of life. It’s the creator of the you and me, us and them teams that are ever present in our world today.
In Richard Miller’s book, Yoga Nidra, he explains that gold is gold no matter the form it takes. Whether it’s a bracelet, bowl or brick it’s essence is still gold. This is the same for life. Whether it takes the form of a flower, elephant or person, the core essence of all life is the same. Deep down, the ego knows this and that is why it clings so dearly to the littlest of things in order to keep us on alert and itself alive. It is why my stomach turned and my chest burned when I realized that I wouldn’t have my make me pretty brush for my trip to New York City.
As the visions of me whisking around town with a Sex In The City full-body do faded away, I challenged myself to go without in the name of simplicity and detachment. Once a clothes and accessory hoarder, I am now simplifying my life down to the basic needs and see that rarely do we need all that we have. This view point came in handy as I embraced my new found finger styling approach to hair care.
It was the willingness to feel the pain and the realization that I can detach myself from such petty needs that was the freeing solution. In the end, what I found was that my husband still loved me, my friends looked at me the same as they always have and that no one, including me, made note that my unbrushed hair was as tragic as my ego believed it to be.
The importance of sharing this experience revolves around our ability to discredit that uber convincing voice who screams loudly to be heard in the name of conflict. The process is simple and it starts with presence. In order to get away from the story in our head we must be able to see the moment in front of us and be willing to sift through the drama to see the truth. It is here that we are reminded that we are always alright. The more we get familiar with honing in on the truth of the now, the more we see it in our everyday life and our transition out of the ego trap becomes quicker and more skillful. Brush or no brush, right now is the only guarantee of our continued existence so I vote for making the most of it.
And just for the record there seems to be more pressing issues happening in NYC than my unbrushed locks. Did you know that high fashion for men now equals pant and arm lengths that are about two inches too short?
Well, at least that’s what my ego is reporting from the bustling streets of Manhattan.