It was not quite dawn, still dark outside and also dark within my house. I was awake enough to know I wanted to get rid of that morning mouth feeling so I ambled over to the toothbrush and paste. Innocently proceeding, I somehow rubbed bristles the wrong way and splashed toothpaste into my eye. Oh my gosh! Are you kidding me?!
The burning sensation was horrible. Stunned and sleepy, I immediately began rinsing and rinsing my eye with cool water to flush the paste out of it but the burn persisted. I found my mind racing across scenarios — I heard the proclamation of “too bad, but the eye is ruined, you will never see again”, “so sad, she was so visual”, and “if only she had been more careful”. This all took place within only a few short minutes but I was scared about the damage that I may have inadvertently done to myself. Such is the mindset of an accident victim.
Mindfulness is my mantra every day and yet, we are simply not with it every moment of our existence. How do we make it happen? How do we live a life with no outs and no errors?
We live. We experience the glory and the failures, the mistakes and the mis-steps. We learn to know what it feels like to endure consequences. We learn coping skills.
My eye is fine. I recovered swiftly but have a new appreciation of how my mouth gets clean. I’ll certainly have a more reflective day, sheer terror is my least favorite emotional experience but I know I can survive whatever it is that happens, little goofy events like this or the big horrors I have known. You can too, you already have. We have impressive internal strength.