When I posted my blog entry on New Year’s Day, my mother was very ill and had already made one trip to the emergency room. A thought appeared in my mind that went something like this: “maintaining this ‘focus on focus’ may turn out to be more challenging than I think.” It has been, but I am determined to persevere. The point of my exploration into focus this year is that it is often difficult to maintain. What better way to explore it than to follow through now?
Focusing on something, giving it deepest attention, requires that we let go of other things. That’s often hard to do. However, when something urgent comes into our lives it can, oddly enough, make letting go a little easier. It is as though anything extraneous is stripped away. We don’t have to fight our mind’s inclination to wander because the concern we have is big enough that it can not only pull our focus to the center, it can eclipse other claims to our attention. As hard as a situation may be, as stressful as it can seem, there is still a little relief in being able to let go of some part of our lives in order to cope with it.
It’s a small blessing in a difficult situation. Perhaps, though, when life grows calmer and the crisis passes we can remember what that sense of focus felt like…and turn its energy loose in other areas of our lives.