I woke up early and did what I always do - I drove to the coffee shop. The ritual of the drive has become my morning prayer, I play soulful music and as I drive I talk to the heavens. My morning prayer is always the same: "Dear Universe, please use me in your name, I surrender." -- something along those lines. After prayers and coffee I headed home -- the sun had still not arisen -- to tend to my amazing pooches. Then I had a smoothie, drank some water, and got ready for my morning float session at One Love Float. I headed to my car -- the sun was now up, and the daylight created total clarity and blue skies -- as I got into my car I became aware of an invisible chip that had caused my whole windshield to crack right before my eyes.
Obsessive as my nature is, I now had a topic to become totally fixated on. I drove to the float centre pissed off, overthinking, worrying about money, wondering how this could have happened to me. A mere crack in a silly windshield had now became a full blown poor me, why me story in my head.
I arrive at the float centre for my 10am float, knowing full well that I am floating today with the intention of blogging afterwards. I take my shoes off, head to the open tank room -- also known as 'Ed' -- take off my clothes, have a shower, put my ear plugs in, say some prayers + intentions, and get into the tank. I opted for a shorter float (60 minutes, usually I float for 90 minutes) because after my float I had another super exciting adventure to head out on; filming with The Light Cellar. I lay in the tank, and instantly gravity is kyboshed by buoyancy due 1000lbs of salt, and I become weightless. It's so good. It feels like home, the water feels warm and familiar and I think to myself, 'This is going to be a good float, I’ll wrap this 60 min quickie up with some sweet nuggets of wisdom to post for the world to see'. And then I think, 'Oh shit, no wait. No expectations kori. Just be nothing. Be one with the water, and just see what shows up". I teetered between full blown expectations of float-tank-divine-intervention, and letting go of control, expectation, and the need to have the heavens drop down the "How to do Life Superb, Excellent and Perfect" manual. I shut the lights off, the music dimmed, and I sunk into the abyss of floating.
The water is body temperature making it hard to distinguish where self ends and water begins; hard to feel where water ends and air begins. The float tank takes away the senses, it leaves self totally immersed with… well, self. And that is the whole pain and beauty of floating; nowhere to run, nowhere to hide for wherever we go, there we are.
Floating is really similar to what I would imagine it is like to be in the womb of our Mother. It's safe, warm, and deeply nourishing. Except one thing, my mind was on overdrive. I was obsessing about whatever I could obsess about, my mind was thinking, and chattering, and revving up in speed. I thought about work, and fears, and the future. I thought about business ideas, deadlifts, and my injured shoulder. I thought about why I kept floating to one side of the tank, and why it bothered me so much when my right foot would hit the edge of the tub. I thought about contraptions float tanks ought to be equipped with to ensure that no side-touching of the float tank walls was possible, you know, to ensure the perfect float. I thought about the crack, that stupid crack. How much are windshield to fix? And then I thought how stupid it is to obsess about a windshield – I’m certainly not going to let a windshield give me a damn kanipshin. Windshields don’t matter, I mean they do on the road, but not in the float tank. I came to a self-agreement -- we would let the windshield go, we would thank the lucky stars that we had a car to drive which means we had a windshield to crack, and we would leave it at that.
I become a ‘we’ when I have to talk myself through a dilemma.
So the windshield issues are gone, now to focus on my float.
Breathe Kori, just focus on your breath, breathe in, and exhale -- let it all go -- in the moments I held enough attention to focus on the beauty of breath, I could feel the beating of my heart, and further I could hear the echo of the thump-thump-thump in the cavity of my ribcage; these are the moments humble me. Our human body is so intelligent, so wise, and so divine. It's complex, and fluid. It's strong and soft. It regenerates it self. It heals it self. There I was, in 11 inches of water and 1000lbs of salt -- floating -- what a miracle. I'm sure some would call it science, but I choose to go with miracle.
Ugh but that stupid crack.
No wait, we agreed, no more windshield obsession.
Just breathe, Kori.
Oh my goodness is this float ever going to end?
60 minutes, or a lifetime, who knows anymore, I’ve likely turned to a prune it feels like I’ve been in here so long trapped with my own obsessive, restless mind. Oh my god kori, get it together, you have a wise blog post waiting on the other side of this float, just ... focus.
I thought perhaps I was forgotten in the tank, maybe the timer wasn't set, and maybe it's a cruel trick. No, Treeka wouldn't do that, she knows I have magical elixir making on film with the light cellar after this. Maybe blogging should start next week, I'm over this, I will have nothing wise to say. No wait Kori, remember that even if you don't touch the face of god in this tank, and even if you are not catapulted to the dimensions of sage wisdom to take back to the earth plane and share with the homosapiens, you are still laying in 1000lbs of salt.
Epsom Salts is what’s used in the tank, this salt is known for it’s heavy Magnesium content. Magnesium is relaxing on the body, muscles, and nervous system. I don't have to be in a deep meditative state to reap the rewards of this medicine, in fact, one hour in a float tank is meant to be equivalent to 4 hours of deep sleep -- check my stats here people, I went memory on that one, my point is that it’s super restful.
What a waste of a float.
And then the music came on -- that’s how the floater is signaled that the float is done -- and surprisingly, I started to weep. I lay in the tank, in the dark, totally naked, and I cried. I cried for a whole song. And then the next song came on, I turned the light on, sat up in the fetal position with my head bowed and I wept. Tears flowing for no apparent reason, but it felt good.
Then I got up feeling a little shocked at my emotions after what I had deemed as a "waste of time float", I showered slowly. My heart felt tender, my emotions were raw. I felt humbled, and still.
I then sat on the couch, puled out the notes in my phone, and wrote.
Here are today's lessons from the float tank:
60 min felt like a lifetime today.
Training in slowness is more painful than training for a marathon. I was itchy, unsettled, & flooded with infinite thoughts.
I went in with no expectations and yet, I still expected great ah-ha moments, visualization, divine guidance.
But nothing - or so it seemed - other than me, 1000 lbs of salt, a tank full of water, a dark room, and a restless chatty mind.
But there was one thing I saw, there was a little girl who sat under some sort of a tree, maybe an olive tree, in a meadow filled with calmness and flowers. I was curious about her in the flickering moments I was able to concentrate. She was here with me last float too. I’m certain she is a part of me, a calm, foreign part of me. She was serene, unbothered by my restlessness. She didn’t even seem to notice me hovering around, trying to sniff out what her purpose was, and catch a glimmer of her face.
She just sat there.
The field this little person sat in was still , not even a slight breeze, and the olive tree she sat under was lifelessly motionless - except that it was filled with life.
I thought I was forgotten in the float tank. It was like I was in there for an infinite time. Part of me wanted to quit, get up, shower and leave. But the other part of me was content in that water, happy to be in the womb of a tank - close to self, close to the infinite void.
The little girl under the olive tree was fleeting, she made up only about .0000000001% of my float, the rest was restlessness. I thought that perhaps this would be a float I would walk away with no lessons learnt.
Then the music came back on, and I opened my eyes and started to cry. I cried weightless in the tank, only adding more salt tear by tear. I turned the dim blue light back on and I sat up, naked, in the fetal position - listening to more music - and I continued to cry.
You see, the work is not always known to us. Sometimes it’s deeper than we can imagine. Often the work is a total act of faith.
There is something profound to me about the waters of a float tank, actually water in general, I don’t know why it’s so healing, I’m not totally sure why I am so drawn to it; but it has been in the dark cocoon of the frustrating float tank that I have been able to touch the face of god.
I wrapped today’s 60 minutes up weeping and speaking out loud in prayer to the heavens.
I don’t know what goes happens on a molecular, spiritual level in those waters, but I always walk away a little more softened.
As for that girl under the olive tree, I shall continue to get to know her - her peace is so attractive to me.