I met His Holiness the Dalai Lama today. And by that I mean that I was in a small group of people who were in a specially arranged meeting with him to have a private discussion.

It is the 6th time I have met His Holiness. It is a wonderful experience.

The first time was way back in 2002. At the time I was working for the Australia Tibet Council and we were hosting an event for His Holiness in Sydney. The night before I was so excited I could not sleep. After the event I virtually had no recollection of it. I can only remember it because someone had the presence of mind to take a photo of the meeting.

All of my other meetings have been because of my involvement in the Australia Tibet Council as a board member or the International Tibet Network as a representative. Meetings that have been in either Sydney or Melbourne and one special time in Dharamsala in the Dalai Lama’s office (I now have the ability to calm my mind enough to remember!).

They have been important meetings about the Tibet situation and how Tibet supporters and activists around the world can help Tibet . A country that has been so horribly destroyed and people oppressed since 1949 when China invaded. The human rights violations and the environmental distruction is and ongoing statement of modern day colonialism and repression.

I know other people want to talk to the Dalai Lama about inner happiness and spiritual enlightenment. Yes I hear these messages too, when I attend his teachings, pubic events etc. His messages about universal responsibility and interconnectedness are amazingly astute in this time of climate change and environmental woe.

But what I wanted to talk about was this. When I got out my notes from the last Dalai Lama teachings I went too in 2009 I found this note too my self ‘I need to live more in the present – I spend too much time thinking about the future’ . This is the Buddhist concept of mindfulness – having conscious of the moment. It is something that has been really worrying me about this adoption process. I spend too much time thinking about our future child, being a mum, Husbot as a dad.

It is ironic because I know that mindfulness is the parenting style that Husbot and I are planning to adopt with our children. We don’t want to be reactionary parents but parents who are aware or mindful of our children and their needs and what they are trying to communicate to us. I think it is a worthy challenge.

However I feel that I am not really achieving this at the moment. I mean the blog it kind of tracking how I am feeling during the waiting times. And of course there is a lot of time when I am caught up in work, volunteering (as an ATC board member) etc but there is a lot of daydreaming about the future – which is not mindfulness. When I am walking Indai for example my mind should just be in the moment of walking Indai, not thinking – how am I going to do this in the future when I have a child, will they be walking beside me or in the pram or the ergo or… then it goes to the usual will our child be a boy or girl?… how old?… when will we know?… Etc etc my mind drifts off.

Worryingly is when this happens during work. Not when anything too important is happening but if someone is droning on at a staff meeting then it is very hard to keep my mind from wandering off to the how many cloth nappies will we need?… I hope the baby likes Indai…. I hope Indai likes the baby!…. etc etc it is not good.

So, now I have had another reminder about mindfulness and being more aware and conscious of my daily life. It is only through by learning the lessons of this waiting time that I will be ready for the next.

By the way if you want to know more about Tibet and how you can do something to help here is a resource www.atc.org.au

If you want to know more about the Dalai Lama’s Australia tour  then please go to http://www.dalailamainaustralia.org/ he is still going to Brisbane and Perth after Melbourne.

with metta, Z