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LYFT Confessions: You’re in Jail in Your Own Mind

“I’m not even going to lie to you, I’m checking myself into jail right now” said she. 

I’m not even going to lie to you, pride and ego aside, I’ve decided to drive for Lyft (and happily doing so) to get back on my feet after my four month (not so cheap) journey. In an effort to get inspired and network, I’ve been meeting so many characters on my drives. Thriving on these human relationships, each serving my own learning, I am grateful that I have the ability to not only pay the bills, but am joyfully doing this, since it gives me the opportunity to park and write (or take a nap if I find myself in my neighborhood). 

After sleeping at around 9:30pm every night this weekend and waking up around 5am, meditating and going straight to my car for a few hours of driving, I’ve met a few fun and interesting souls. This morning’s first ride though I was not fully ready for. I hadn’t even had my coffee yet.  It was dark, so I didn’t know what to expect. Would it be a hungover dude going back home? Would it be the after party crowd? Perhaps, my first ride of shame? Nope, none of that. She was a lovely young girl. 

So I thought…Should I greet her with my chirpy morning chipperness? Should I just let my music do the work? 

“How are you?”, I said. 

She said she was ok and asked if I could stop at the corner gas station. I did. They didn’t have her NyQuil. I suggested we stop at the 7-11. She found her NyQuil and nervously, rapidly swallowed the two large pills. She got back in and immediately told me

I’m not even going to lie to you, I’m

checking myself into jail. I’m so 

nervous. 

My immediate response was to say “oh I’m sorry, honey.” But I realized she’s probably heard that a million times. So I suggested to ease her nerves by suggesting we do some breathing exercises for the remaining of the way. I even said she could use this while she’s in there. We laughed. I offered her some biscotti for her last meal, we laughed more.  I told her how brave she is for checking herself in and thanking her for coming into my path this morning. I held her hand at the end of the ride and said “this too shall pass” and “everytime you get upset just smile inside”. 

Briefly mentioning my monastery experience in Nepal and how it sometimes felt like jail, she inspired me to write this. She said, “oh shit that’s like being in jail in your own mind.” 

So, then I thought what’s worse? Is it our locked up, pent up mind or adapting to the actual prison environments. 

There is a happy ending to this story. She is only checking herself in for two days. That too, will feel forever for her, but it will pass, because all things in life ARE impermanent and transitory. 

I hold your hand and tell you too, if you have an ongoing misfortune of unhappiness, it will be fleeting. It will pass. Let go and find something to laugh and smile about. 

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