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Metamorphosis, Guest Post by Cami Babineaux

Hello, my name is Cami and this is my journey of meditation practice and how it saved my life.

In the earliest of morning darkness before the birds and city is up I hear my alarm at 5 am to start my meditation practice. I rise before the sun to greet my body with its first conscious breath of the day, the breath is mine and it’s in no rush to go or do anything else. Pour myself some lemon water to start alkalizing my system and then head downstairs to the backyard to begin my practice, setting up the mat, burning whatever incense I have, lathering on essential oils, once I feel centered and present I begin my practice. Usually with some small movement and then to sit down comfortably I play my sound bowl to clear the energy of the space and then I sit. Listening to the sounds around me, feeling the cool morning air against my skin, the ground is still dewy with the mornings mist, the birds are starting to sing, slowly but surely the sun starts to rise. I grab my mala beads, listening to my intuition I practice affirmation mantras for example: I am patient, I am courageous, or I am strong. Go all the way around the 108 beautifully beaded green aventurine mala till I hit the end and go back around finally ending with a prayer and sending that energy out into the day.

My practice didn’t always start out that way, as a child I was diagnosed with ADHD always being told to calm down and sit still. So naturally sitting still was extremely uncomfortable but luckily during this time I was going through yoga teacher training. I had the guidance of two amazing teachers who guided me along the path of meditation.

At first, I so desperately wanted to drop into a deep meditative state to detach from my thoughts that seemed to be like a tornado that would wash over me with no control or direction. I turned to crystals, sound bowls, mala’s, anything I could tangibly get my hands on to deepen my practice, but what I was doing was avoiding the physical practice so that I could be dependent on something and not myself. I didn’t trust myself enough yet with my own thoughts, grateful for all the amazing tools that are offered, but true meditation is sitting down with your shit and separating thought from emotion.

Something I couldn’t comprehend yet as I was ruled by emotion like most of us are, immediately feeling a rush of emotion with someone or something out of my immediate control. I dealt for many years with crippling anxiety and depression so bad it would send me into a whirlwind where it would get so bad to the point where I would pass out.

My hard drive if you will was completely full with suppressed emotions that I never dealt with and early developmental trauma that was being housed in my bones. But all I felt was fear and uncertainty of what my thoughts were, I had shut off my intuition so much so that she wasn’t coming through at all.

Until one fateful morning, I got a call from my mother that my brother Jordan had passed from suicide, I immediately fell to the ground and felt the world close around me.

The whirlwind began again but this time it was relentless with constant questions asking why he was taken away. Why I wasn’t there more for him, why I never saw any sign or didn’t do enough to contact him, I felt so much guilt in my heart that I wasn’t there more for him. But mostly that my brother in his final moments felt that it was easier to no longer be a part of the world, all I wanted to do was call and talk to him. I couldn’t fathom his physical being no longer here, that he would never read my text asking why and to not hear his laugh or smile again. This is a pain that I would never wish anyone to go through, it’s a jarring, earth shattering, wall crumbling around you kind of pain.

Every day I kept running through the thousands of scenarios in my head of what I could have done better or what I did wrong, I had a longing to understand why he was gone so soon.