Finding Comfort in Chaos is a Matter of Balance

By KM Huber

There are moments I wish would stay forever. Others seem as if they will never leave but to live is to be in constant motion. No single moment ever stays.

Life touches us—painfully, indescribably, unbelievably–myriad experiences ever in motion. It’s chaotic. And it seems I have found comfort in that.

Last week, I wrote of finding balance and the ongoing shifting of left and right until balance arrives of its own accord. Osho refers to this as a “graceful” shifting, which, for me, it never has been.

Rather, it has been a struggle, one worth taking on but akin to sitting in a cave of chaos. I have not found grace there—not yet—but I did find comfort.

The comfort is in knowing that balance is found in the constant motion of being alive. It, too, is impermanent. When I start to squirm, I know I have shifted too far in one direction. It is time to let go and to swing back.

Balance is not identifying with left or right because in balance, I am both. Standing in the middle of a moment is mindful, and I have all the time I need.

The reason everything looks beautiful is

because it is out of balance,

but its background is always in perfect harmony.

This is how everything exists

in the realm of Buddha nature, losing its balance

against a background of perfect balance.

~Shunryu Suzuki~

Variations of this Suzuki quote appear quite frequently in my posts. Yet, this time there is a difference. This time, there is a glimpse of balance in the chaos that is chronic illness. It is first for me.

Recently, I explored northern Florida with a dear friend, whom I have not seen in over a decade. We covered over 500 miles in four days, which for a person with lupus is too much sustained activity, even if most of it is riding in a car.

I am grateful for every moment, and yes, I was exhausted.

I am used to a regular routine of rest following such an outing, a complete break from life, including blogging and writing. It is a shift from full activity to complete inactivity. Not. This. Time.

I do not remember thinking of Suzuki’s “perfect balance of existence” but my subconscious seems to have trusted it. I shifted my resources, not gracefully but gradually, with an increasing awareness of the ever-changing balance available in each moment.

Oh, there were moments of despair but they were brief and not worthy of support. I could not rouse myself to give in, give up, and wait. There was no life in that.

Rather, I immersed myself in each day, looking to the balance available to me. I communicated with my pain—sensing its signals—without struggling but with shifting.

When I went to my acupuncture appointment, my meridians overflowed with energy. An acupuncture point full of Qi (energy) signals stagnation; the needle is the stimulation to release it.

Point after point, Dr. Gold’s needles provided relief. When I first arrived, my overall pain level was a solid 8, my knees a 10. The treatment reduced my overall pain to a 3; in some locations, the pain was gone.

Resting came easier as did my sleep. My level of body energy, no longer trapped, shifted to the daily balance available.

The body is graceful when allowed to do its work in its own way.

To live is to trust the chaotic nature of balance. It is not our nature to stagnate. Ours is to be in the constant chaos, ever shifting.


KM Huber is a writer who learned Zen from a beagle. She believes the moment is all we ever have, and it is enough. In her early life as a hippie, she practiced poetry, and although her middle years were a bit of a muddle, she remains an overtly optimistic sexagenerian, writing prose. She blogs at kmhubersblog.com, may be followed on Twitter @KM_Huber or contacted by email at writetotheranch[at]gmail[dot]com.

© 2015 KM Huber. All content on this page is protected by copyright. If you would like to use any part of this, please contact me at the above links to request permission.


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