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?