The Space In-Between

How Can Gratitude for the Space In-Between Free You from Suffering? Last weekend I became violently ill. It was the vomiting kind of illness; the kind

How Can Gratitude for the Space In-Between Free You from Suffering?

Last weekend I became violently ill. It was the vomiting kind of illness; the kind of illness that lasts for relentless hours. A cycle of nausea and vomiting filled with misery, on repeat.

For me, since I was a child, this is one of the worst kinds of suffering I’ve experienced. Ugh.

Since learning about mindfulness many years ago, though, I have become better at noticing the space in-between.

The space I’m talking about is the one where you’ve just finished throwing up. Your body is hot and heavy as it slides down to the floor, and you are GRATEFUL.

You are grateful for that one, beautiful moment.

The moment where you are free from the pain and suffering that only vomiting can bring as your face touches the cold, hard bathroom tile. It’s the moment when you find momentary separation from the pain and suffering (BEFORE latching on to the next one when fear of its return takes over).

As I began to sip on ginger ale many hours later, after that stomach thing had its way with me, I recognized another space in-between.

This time, I found myself GRATEFUL for the entirety of the illness.

I have been worrying a lot recently, so the stomach thing gave me a break from thinking since the all-consuming pain wouldn’t allow for racing mind non-sense. The break was forced upon me, but it WAS a break, demanding that I rest my mind and body.

This is what pain in our body does, and it’s what pain in our relationships does too. A couple of days later my friend, Lydia and I were telling each other about our lives, when she told me about ZimZum.

ZimZum, a Hebrew explains the process of contracting as it relates to our relationships. Basically, the idea is that God began the process of creation by contracting his Divine light in order to allow a space where seemingly finite and independent realms can exist. 

Lydia told me that the space in-between our relationships holds a lot of power and warned me to be careful of who and what I give my attention to.

It was another moment where I held GRATITUDE, because over the last several years life has pulled me away from countless relationships that were no longer serving me. At the time it caused incredible pain, but now I see it left room to create something new.

Pain is part of the human experience. The contracting, this pain, is inevitable, but in the suffering, we have a choice. 

Letting go and finding GRATITUDE is what frees us from suffering. Just watch the leaves as they fall to their death. They show us how to manage these moments. They don’t complain or suffer.

It’s in their falling and letting go where they remind us of the grace and GRATITUDE of the space in-between.

I would love to help support you in creating MORE and living into the dreams that you have for yourself and your life! If you have questions about this process, decreasing emotional suffering or how to increase support for living the life of your dreams, come connect with me in the Create MORE Peace Facebook group.

About the Artist: Mary is an art therapist and life coach. She considers herself a modern day mindfulness expert who regularly practices herself and teaches others how to effectively incorporate mindfulness and authentic creativity into their lives. Find out more at 

You can find all kinds of products with hand-drawn mandalas by Mary How in my Redbubble shop here

Categories: : art therapy, coping skills, creativity, emotional intelligence, emotional resiliency, gratitude, mental health