Doris Davis 2. Counting Breaths

Doris Davis counts her breaths.


No, not every breath,  just the big, deep, and satisfying ones.  For Doris these are breaths felt in the heart, heart orgasms she names them.  They are breaths that represent completeness or satisfaction, beginnings or endings.  She writes down what brought the breath on.   Today they number over 17,000.

I think the breaths Doris speaks of are what I know as sighs.

We all sigh once in while.  Making a note of why and reviewing the notes seems a useful exercise for those of us who’ve never stopped working on ourselves.

I suspect most sighs are private events.  In public the sigh itself may be surprised although the cause is felt no less.

So why do we sigh?

Epiphany.  This is the best sigh of all—the sigh of clarity.  The final tug that unties a knot in your soul.

Eureka, Realization.  The moment is less grand than epiphany but nearly as satisfying.   The tax refund will be larger than expected.  The furnace does not need to be replaced, just a $12.00 switch.

Frustration, self-impatience.    Where did I file that Word document?

Relief.  Found it.

Completion.   The fourth draft of the blog.  Finding the last typo, the last dangle, the last ambiguous antecedent, the last excuse Anne will have to crack my knuckles again, today.

Made a deal, come to an agreement.  The negotiation struggle is over.  The main sticking point is agreed.

There must be other places that sighs come from.  Any ideas?  What makes you sigh?

Some of my sighs come while barreling down the road.  And I don’t stop to write them down.  But I’ve begun trying to remember.

I think I sign a couple of times a day.  I know I sighed when I finally saw a sign that read, “Welcome to Arizona”.  I crossed a line visible only to surveyors, cartographers, and gerrymanderers.

When is the last time you had a good sigh?

7 Responses to Doris Davis 2. Counting Breaths

  1. JSib says:

    Do you read all these comments Al? I’m wondering? I was returning from Nevada last weekend on Sunday and there was an avalaunch, I know I can’t spell avalanch, on highway 50 so I had to turn back. Mother and I spent the night in a gambling den hotel. She lost 30 dollars in the Wheel of Fortune slot machines. And when that fact sunk in I was witness to a real honest to God sign by the depression era older person.

  2. Histscape says:

    I sigh. Like now when I know I have to write my Journal which I have every day for 20 years come Dec 26th. I write every day in ink with my Calligraphy pen. I sigh because I paid for a WordPress and have only used it once in a month.

  3. Colleen Rae says:

    When I take a deep breath and then release it,
    a long sliding sigh escapes on the wings of my tongue.
    When I sigh I say goodbye to the stresses and negative thoughts
    and unhappy feelings.
    When I sigh I feel light –
    floating on a wind current like a hawk…
    and when I take another deep breath
    I am inhaling strength, power, compassion and understanding.

  4. karen wittgraf says:

    I sigh when I finish a really good book and I sigh when my granddaughter makes the A honor roll. I sigh when my autistic grandson reveals understanding of events around him. I sigh when something positive happens for my kids and I sigh when I look in the mirror and think “Could be worse, old girl”.

  5. I sigh with contentment when I wake each morning and know I opened my eyes to another day. I’ve been doing that since a sniper almost took me out in Vietnam.

    Even a miss at a fraction of an inch was too close–one of those instances never forgotten.

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