“This is really considered therapeutic?”
I’ve avoided the coloring fad until now. But, after helping out at coloring club after school, I decided that it might be the perfect thing to do while traveling. I like to listen to podcasts. But unlike reading or doing Sudoku, it creates the problem of what to do with one’s eyes. When I plop down in an airport chair, I end up staring at the camp group in the matching T-shirts or the aggressive business people talking on their cell phones. If someone catches my eye, I have to hurriedly pretend that I’m interested in finding something in my vast tote bag.
Thus, a few years late, I’m finally on the coloring bandwagon. At the store, I felt cynical about how every coloring book was marketed as “calm,” “meditative,” or “joyful.” I wondered, “Isn’t this the same as any other distraction out there? How is this really that different than watching TV?”
“Well, TV is dynamic. There’s action and conversation. It doesn’t let you think and process like you can do while coloring,” my husband responded.
Later, while making popcorn on the stove and thinking about life, I realized I was doing a popcorn mediation. My body was engaged in the repetitive motion of turning the popcorn maker’s crank. And my mind was free. I think to truly be meditative, my mind would have been tethered to the moment, but it was a start. I had forgotten that meditation doesn’t involve taking action or working to fix something. It can happen while coloring or doing absolutely nothing. That’s kind of the point.
It’s awareness that one is being. And that this being takes place when everything and everyone around you is being too.