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  • My therapist says I have a tendency to think in black and white. I am deeply embarrassed to admit he is right. Although I can see many colors and shades of grey in some areas of my life, abusive relationships have left me feeling black and white in the love arena.

    When my husband is sweet, kind and loving, I feel white. I feel happy and loving, comforted and safe. And when he says or does something mean and inconsiderate, I feel black, full of anger, rage, hatred. I start considering divorce.

    I have been doing early-stage Tonga practice. I breathe in and touch my deepest darkest feelings. Then I breathe out into the arms of the Buddha, the joyous Universe.

    Last night, my husband said something hurtful, and I felt hateful. I hate feeling hateful. I didn’t want to breathe into that feeling, because I was afraid it would expand like a black balloon and explode its inky darkness over me, filling me with despair, and preventing me from sleeping.

    Instead, when I breathed into it, I found pain, deep pain, and tears exploded over me. I wept. I tried to weep quietly, because my husband lay in bed beside me and I didn’t want to disturb him, but he heard me and wrapped his arms around me, which made me cry harder. His arms were not only his, but also the loving arms of the Buddha, the joyous Universe.

    The tears and his arms washed away the pain and left me feeling loved and peaceful. White. Hardly what I had expected from all that blackness.
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