Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Yoga

The part I didn't write to the below portion is my feelings about inadequacy. The following article is about my inability to do something that I try to do, something I've practiced for years - yoga - and I still can rarely complete a pose. I have some embarrassment about that. I'm accustomed to being accomplished, to being able to do "anything that I set my mind to do". How many times was I told that in the past? You can do it! Just do it! Anything is possible!

Sadly, it's not true. I couldn't get my visa approved. I couldn't make the system work for me. I couldn't pass their test. I don't even know what their test was.

So, here is my veiled attempt to make lemonade from lemons. I missed out on an opportunity. Perhaps it wasn't my opportunity to begin with. Perhaps it was just a pipe dream. But I have an abaya in my closet - the over dress and the scarf. I have 3 hair holders. I have half a dozen new ankle length skirts.

My bubble was burst. But as always, I have a new bubble... stay tuned for it.




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Many years ago, I fell and found my ankle swelling bigger and bigger and BIGGER! I went to the doctor and after x-rays and exams, he tells me that it's just sprained, and take these meds, and don't walk, etc. As I was leaving, he off-handedly said, "when did you break it?" When did I break it? "I've never broken it," I tell him. "Sure, you have. Here and here. You can see it clearly on the x-ray." And there it was - a bump, a zigzag, a non-smooth place on my bones where in fact I had broken my ankle and never been treated for it. This same scenario played out several times in my adult life. Finally, a doctor said to me,"It's no wonder you have pain. You didn't get treated for your scrapes."

I heard somewhere that yoga would help me with my pain, would be a good way to relax, would help the pain in my back, so I tried it. After two weeks, the back pain was gone, but the pain in other parts of my body began to creak out of me as I let go of muscles that had been tight for years in response to all the modifications I did to reverse the pain I felt.

For over ten years, I've been practicing yoga. A long time, ten years. Some months I do it more than others. The last year, I practiced almost not at all. But I keep going. In class last night I had a realization - there were maybe half a dozen poses that I could accurately do. Seriously, a half a dozen. After ten years of yoga, I was still miserably unaccomplished.

But it is in yoga, that we learn to honor our bodies, to quiet our minds, to live with a body / mind / spirit melange that we don't often have in other areas of our lives. Well, I don't have anyway. So in my failure to strike the exact pose, I am still a success. It is in the honoring of the body, living in the moment, and quieting the mind that I succeed. No, I will never be a yoga guru. I will never hold myself up on one foot or put a foot behind my head or any of the other intricate moves that others can do.

But, this I know. Each time I practice yoga, I release new fears and pain. I live in the moment and love myself. Yoga is the one place that I know of where the practice is more important than the perfection. Perhaps my own failure in other aspects of my life would be well served by integrating a little yogic thought.

Namaste

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