grateful for Austin
grateful for Skaters
grateful for Sisters
grateful for Yoga
grateful for Healing
i’m pissed about the pain. it’s annoying; scary; disabling.
it’s fucking annoying the healers say it’s dad. fuck that. i’m over dad. it has healed.
i deserve to be free of this pain.
hey pain: get the fuck out after Oregon. k?
i don’t want to be gluten free for life. or raw. get the fuck out after Oregon. or sooner.
i’m having a child. get the fuck out.
oh Cascade Mountains, please receive the pain. let me leave healed. let me know i’m healed.
“Going beyond fear begins when we examine our fear: our anxiety, nervousness, concern and restlessness. If we look into our fear, if we look beneath the veneer, the first thing we find is sadness, beneath the nervousness. Nervousness is cranking up, vibrating all the time. When we slow down, when we relax with our fear, we find sadness, which is calm and gentle. Sadness hits you in your heart, and your body produces a tear. Before you cry, there is a feeling in your chest and then, after that, you produce tears in your eyes. You are about to produce rain or a waterfall in your eyes and you feel sad and lonely and perhaps romantic at the same time. That is the first tip of fearlessness, and the first sign of real warriorship. You might think that, when you experience fearlessness, you will hear the opening to Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony or see a great explosion in the sky, but it doesn’t happen that way. Discovering fearlessness comes from working with the softness of the human heart.” Chogyam Trungpa
My Warrior’s Cry for Today:
I cry from Physical Pain.
I cry for feeling Fearful of my body.
I cry for my Inability to cry.
I cry in Frustration of feeling paralyzed and unable to communicate these feelings.
I cry for Freedom.
I cry in Gratitude for such Freedom.
I cry in Gratitude of the Sweetness of the Love of a Great Man.
I cry in Gratitude of the Kindness of old and new Friends.
I cry in Gratitude of the Answers to my Cry for Help.
I cry in Gratitude of Each Blessing, Each Sweet Soul, and Each Opportunity to Give.
I want to come back to this blog. Actually, I’d prefer to return to the place I was writing prior to this blog. The one that started 5+ years ago after my marriage dissolved. As I was planning to move to Portland. Life seems to be circling back in sychronicity. It would be lovely to read those former posts. I can’t remember the name of that blog.
It’s amazing how much changes. And how much I forget.
Time passes beyond what I can hold onto. Everything has changed.
Today, I am self employed. Separately, I’m a business owner. I’m a business partner. I’ve grown to become a yoga teacher. Where I was once uncertain, I now stand strong. Sometimes I’m an educator. I’m a speaker. A listener. An advisor. I’m a researcher. A challenger of paradigms. I find myself trying to define what I Am. What a strange pursuit. Yet as someone self employed, I am constantly asked to tell people what I Am and what I Do. They say people need to hear exact things I do. So I keep trying. This week I re-evaluate. It’s been a year. Time to Refine.
Sometimes I suffer with endometriosis. I need to write about this. I rejected the therapy that forces the body into menopause for a year. I made it 2 years. And it seems to be back. It brought disabling pain and fear. Right now I hope to stay out of the ER as I plan for an alternate treatment. I need to make it through at least 2 or 3 more cycles. I am scared. And tearful.
I’m dating the sweetest man I’ve ever known. Part of me does not want to say the sweetest because I’m blessed to know and have dated many sweet men. Yet this man overwhelms me with sweetness. Tears of sweetness fall from my eyes. He’s gentle. Smart. He challenges the paradigm. Yesterday he was scared about the endometriosis. Last night I caught myself wondering whether he’s my healer; whether I’ve been looking for my healer; and whether we are all looking for our healers and maybe that’s a component to the term soul mates.
I need to come back here to say some things. Now that I’m self employed, people come to me for advice. Yoga students come for what they need. I love giving to each of these Beautiful Souls. It brings me great joy. A few weeks ago I did a meditation retreat and the resounding message was: I am Happy. I am Happy. At my deepest essence, I am Happy.
Sometimes I’m lonely. The Sweetest Man is helping change that. In the last year, I left my corporate job and the family I had created there in 5 years of service. I’m alone a lot now. 3 of my best friends moved away. I am grateful to my community and I am present to the reality of the shift. It’s ok to acknowledge that I’m lonely.
I need to write. I miss it. I kept a personal journal much of last year but the habit has cycled out. The cycles of life. I don’t want to write in a journal. This cycle, I need my little piece of the net. Even if no one reads, it feels as if I’m talking to someone. I’m grateful to talk to You.
today i remember the feeling that hooked me to yoga. i feel strong, balanced, open and light. i finally made it to the Forrest Yoga class i’ve been eyeing. slowly some feelings of normalcy trickle back into my life after those unforgiving weeks of insomnia. it’s taken 6+ weeks to near recovery! yuck! there’s no more stark a wake up call than insomnia… well, unless you count a certain telephone poll that collapsed atop of maxi.
these days i’m sleeping hard and dreaming hard. the dreams have been furious and erratic and i’m super glad they have returned. i need to dream. it was dark to live without dreams. and that’s kind of how life felt for a while – yuck!
there have been a few dreams in particular that are particularly stark. one involved a friend who lives in Dallas and my yoga teacher. i remembered some of the bizarre events of the dream but not the reading recommendation until a girlfriend came over a few days later with this book. as she started telling me about it i instantly recalled the author’s name, not knowing where i had derived the information. i was sure i had never heard of the book and it took me a while to recall it from the dream. i could only remember the image of the person who told me to read it, my girlfriend suggested i search my dreams. ummmmm…? yes, i will read the book immediately.
i recently dreamed about AP. it was a highly emotional dream with vivid imagery. i woke up shattered at 2 a.m (consistent w/ my insomnia patterns). it did not keep me awake for too long as i shifted back into dreamland with more restful imagery. this dream revisited me in savasana as we closed out our yoga practice last night. think that’s a good thing.
i have enjoyed recapturing my time now that my teacher training is complete. this past sunday felt like my own again. i enjoyed my new pattern of leading a 9:45 vinyasa class, coming home and listening to This American Life as i prepare my tofu scramble brunch, and then catching an afternoon snooze before i tended to the house and the Sunday Stock. it was really lovely.
i know i need to continue to rest. i also want to do so in a manner that supports rejuvenation of my creative flow. my dream feels distant, undefined and impalpable. my biological clock is going through another “on” phase after a long enjoyed “off” period (yes, i did just go there even if single women in their 30s aren’t supposed to). that statement alone probably summarizes this entire post, and so does this one - Things. Are. Stirring, folks. i don’t want to get lost or lose the roll in my direction, and i don’t think i will.
i’ve been wondering if i should sign up for an art class this summer. or finally take that sewing class. attend a lecture? try out a dance class? circus yoga? maybe so, yes! so long as it isn’t too structured or requiring much of a time commitment (like, beyond 2 hours)… hmmm… maybe just that new yoga class this week (wink, wink).
today i stumbled upon a project called Dream Lab. it’s refered by an acquaintance* whose blog i stumbled upon at random chance today. here’s what excites me about it:
We asked ourselves what class we most needed to take the answer was obvious– We needed a summer! We needed to learn how to play, to rest and to be kind to ourselves. As we thought about it more, we realized that these are key ingredients to manifesting dreams but they were glaring holes in our curriculum.
This is the thought that inspires me to no end: What would happen if we set aside our lists (our goals, our drive, struggle) for eight weeks? What would shift in our lives as a result of radical acts of play? of kindness? of rest? What would this clearing create space for in our hearts and in our lives?
i can’t wait to find out either. the experience begins June 21st. do you want to join us?
* i want to send an email to this chick without being all weird and internets stalker like. her email addy is on her blog, so is her full name, her photo and many details about her life so her identity is not trying to be kept anonymous. what should i say in my email to her? here’s what i got so far (paraphrasing): “ hey, we met at once before at X Event. i stumbled upon your blog today and i think you’re cool. i live nearby and also like yoga. want to be friends?” HA! help!
last night i went to see a psychic. i had driven by her blinking florescent lights in this funky neighborhood 100s of times and never stopped. i didn’t know anything of her and i wanted to have a reading done by someone with a good reputation. in hindsight seeing a psychic is pretty much a random drive thru regardless of their perceived reputation.
as we got out of the car we took notice of the blazing bbq pit emoting a charred fragrance. it seemed we were just in time for dinner. ”don’t knock” my friend said, catching my arm and pulling it away from the door. “use the buzzer.” a man answered the door, asked us if we had been there before. my friend nodded yes, he asked us to come back in an hour and closed the door. sensing our hesitation he reopened the door and said 15 minutes might be ok. determined to know our fortune, we decided to wait it out at the drinkery nearby.
i’d heard good things about the cocktails at this bar. we found those good things to be true, and strong. 45 minutes later and half buzzed we went back to the psychic. with only $20 left in our pockets we opted for palm readings instead of tarrot. i went first.
“your heart is good. very healthy. no heart attack, no cancer, no disease.” (umm… thanks). “you will live until 96. your man, 91. you’re a writer. you could write a romance novel. hahahahaha you should. oooooh yeah.” (oooooh yeah?) “you’re a teacher! what’s this? you’ve been a teacher in many lives. ” (ummmm.) ”you have kids with this man?” (man? no, no kids yet.) “you will. boy!!!” (i love boys!) “yes! 2 boys and 1 girl. hahahahahahaha”
doing ok so far. i find her laughing kind of fun. she’s quite lovable actually. i wanted her to tell me more.
“your soulmate is in your life now.” (great!) “i see 2 men.” (not as great…) “the one who is stable. he’s always around.” (yes! great.) “and the one who is all over the place. he’s funny! hahahahahaha yes, funny man! he’ll never change.” (haha. ha?) “you should pack your suitcase. be ready for his every whim. hahahahahahaha he’ll drive you mad! he’ll never change. he’s your Soulmate.” (ha?) “get rid of the other one. the one who’s always there. break up with him. chase the other one. he’s your soulmate.” (haaaaaa… ppppppppthhhhhpt. think it’s your turn, friend.) “you like to drink hahahahahahahaha” (nice one!)
great advice, yes?
i can’t explain it but i find her to be such fun! i still smile b/c she’s so adorable. i sort of want to go back for a tarrot reading. HA!
but the advice. really? soulmate is a funny word. so trendy even. like the word “spiritual” and “connection.” it’s interesting to observe the posturing with these words. driving away my friend spent a few minutes considering the puzzle over who is my Soulmate. all the while i felt unaffected and amused. i think that’s the answer. and it’s probably no coincidence i bought myself a pendulum when i purchased her birthday gift earlier in the day. i had one up on the psychic. i had already asked the pendulum about my relationship. ha!!!
what a fun night!
P.S. heart wrenching sadness over the headline “Should we euthanize oil-soaked birds?“ let’s not talk about it, ok? does anyone else have childhood memories of having to remove tar from their feet after trips to the beach? ahhhh the life of a gulf coast child. yikes. and why do i feel so compelled to go to the ocean right now? i haven’t wanted to go to galveston in at least 15 years.
The other day my thoughtful, beautiful, kind, perceptive, intelligent friend, Ivy, said to me, “The Tea Party is worthy of examination. They have generated a lot of attention and support for their position. They have demonstrated that they are capable of creating change. Look, they got someone elected to congress last week.” Huh?
Me, “The teabaggers are not worthy of examination. They are employing post-Bushism tactics of arousing support with unmitigated negativity that includes the worst offenders to society: fear, aggression, anger and racism. Violence solves nothing. They will self implode. Their elected official’s libertarian policies fly in the face of the interests of their supporters. Please don’t consider their techniques as an example for motivating change. It’s not sustainable.”
Ivy made some concession as we had a quick laugh remembering “Keep your government hands off my Medicare.”
Ivy suggests that nonviolence is a bankrupt philosophy. Ouch. I suggest that contributing violence to this world bankrupts society – violence in any form and at every level.
I love Ivy. We share a passion for a better earth, which is how we met, and often view solutions to a problem as if we were sitting on opposing sides of a seesaw. Our relationship is special in that we often teeter between Ivy’s highly scientific and educated understanding of climate change (et al) and my intelligent yet heart centered, Hippie-ism response. We are constantly learning from one another. It’s beautiful.
I don’t know whether we resolved our differences on nonviolence. I stand by my affections for it, as we discussed my most recent self challenge to study nonviolent communication. I find myself here again and commit to learning more. This examination begins of course with my own strengths and weaknesses, particularly the weaknesses. In reflection, I recognize that calling members of the Tea Party “teabaggers” is an act of violence itself. Violence is everywhere. It’s in the words we choose, the paradigms we’ve learned and those we choose, it’s in the food we eat. The scale is as huge and complex as is the opportunity and path for growth.
Another area where Ivy and I differ in opinion is on where to influence change. Ivy envisions large scale organizational change. Ivy has the tenacity to affect this change. I really hope Ivy goes for it. Ivy can do it. I see Ivy struggle at the personal level, which is an interesting contrast, and where I’m the most effective. Leading by example is comfortable to me because it’s the least intrusive to others. I think of myself as quite passive, not in that I’m afraid to teach, but because it’s my preference to avoid conflict at almost any cost. I know where I learned this behavior. It’s an interesting paradigm. What’s also interesting is that as often as Ivy and I disagree, not once have I felt defensive in debating our differences.
My first little nugget in this path to deepen my experience of nonviolence comes in the embracing that none of us are our worst behaviors. It’s interesting to consider the reach of such truth, and how it challenges my relationship to conflict and communication.
i am teaching a new vinyasa flow class at my studio. this class is inspired by a weekend i spent in new orleans with the fabulous women of NYC’s Laughing Lotus. the Laughing Lotus style was empowering and freeing. there was chanting, large soulful music, expression of our gifts, even singing while in asana. there was a special part of the class, towards the end, where the teacher would call us from our mats into a “yoga huddle” to share something she had learned that week in her personal journey, followed by instruction on an intricate partner pose that draws the class into a sharing space to support one another in learning something new. after this enchanting weekend together, my teacher offered me a sunday morning teaching spot.
prior to this i had only worked with the children. my kids’ class is growing. these beautiful little souls have taught me confidence in leading a class. they have taught me to find the energy that’s needed to affect people, and share it. each week brings something new. it’s been interesting to consider how they say “what you are teaching is what you need to learn.”
for my soulful vinyasa class i found my first lesson in love. i resonated with: “the love that makes you happy is the love you give away.” in my fantasy of designing this class i imagined a room full of students. i thought about how i wanted to share this and how we’d generate love to give to ourselves, each other, someone we love, someone who is suffering, a crisis somewhere outside of our immediate attention. i spent days creating the perfect playlist of heart opening music to inspire the soul to sing. it was all really lovely, and completely overlooked the fact that i was teaching in a new time slot, kind of early on sunday mornings. when only 1 student turned up for my first class, i laughed at my shortsightedness and proceeded to deliver really lovely class tailored to needs of my student sans share time. he loved the music and had a ton of positive feedback about the energy of the class. ever since, i have been thinking about being present to experience the happiness of the love i give away.
i’ve been personally challenged in the last several days. before receiving news that broke my heart, i was in a less than resourceful state. i had been experiencing another prolonged bout of insomnia, suffering springtime allergies for the first time in my life, attempted a liver cleanse, had pms, intolerance with my employer, ups and downs of dating… ehhhh… nothing super major but irritating enough, finding myself in somewhat of a valley cycle of life. the news came to me saturday morning. this was my first weekend of no teacher training so i had committed myself to a weekend of catch up. “life delivers us challenges when we are ready to face them.” i was up to my elbows in spring cleaning when my brother called. after we got off the phone, i had 3 challenges to face – teaching yoga to children, teaching vinyasa flow the next morning, and tending to the business we’d just discussed the following afternoon. i had no idea where the energy would come from in order to succeed in these tasks. in fact, i was quite terrified i would be a mess of tears at all 3 events.
i made a decision to serve my students. the time they spent with me was not about me at all. i needed and wanted to give. i had one of the most connected classes with my kids that day. i was a mess in the car ride home but i was satisfied i had shared with those kids. the next morning i was not ready to teach vinyasa flow. i had gotten out of bed at 5 a.m. and was dreading the events of the afternoon. i drove to the studio hoping no one would show up for my class. instead, i had 2 students. again, i channeled service to my students and gave a great class. in fact, one of my students, who is also a friend, told me after class that she was in such a state before my class and that my class was exactly what she needed. she commented that i had shared so much energy in the class. i was completely shocked. literally had to pry my jaw off the floor in order to leave the studio. in deciding to use only my heart, i had reached far beyond what my mind believed for myself.
my 3rd attempt at giving love away was not as successful. i’ve been learning to recognize distinctions* and this one was hard for me to understand before getting a full night of sleep (yay for sleeping last night!). some people cannot accept love. these people may be full of ego, they may be sick, they may be abusive, they may be insecure, they may be unhappy, they may be mean, they may be victims, they may be jealous, they can be a whole host of things that are unresourceful and toxic. it can become confusing to distinguish the line between giving love and being compassionate. i have struggled to define this in the relationship i speak of because there is a sense of obligation to this inherited** relationship and an honest desire to give love to a person who has none. i suggest the line is drawn when the recipient resents the love you give. my experience on sunday was harmful to me and possibly brought more suffering to the recipient. possibly the love to give to him is the love i give from afar. this is probably the most compassionate too. if he comes back to me in a more resourceful state, possibly i can give directly to him again. this feels good.
if we only focus on love we give, we can be happy. this love is so grand because the ego never gets involved. it is pure, it surprises us, it teaches us things, it never considers what we get in exchange, and most importantly it has no expectations attached to it.
give love. be happy. be free.
*without explanation, which would be negative, i will share something that was recently illustrated in my life: there is a difference between a snake and a serpent, and the distinction is important.
**inherited strikes me as an interesting word to consider in the context of our relationships and loyalties. to be inherited does not mean to be worthy.