Happy to report that I am back on my mat.
You’d think from reading this blog that I do yoga all the time. I don’t.
I’m actually not a creature of habit. I find that any routine can get stale, which bores me – and in my experience of myself, that’s when I start to rebel. Usually this means a full stop.
It’s not that I get lazy. It’s more like a feeling of being confined. This claustrophobia and subsequent rebellion applies to most routines I attempt – even taking vitamins! One day I won’t take that massive B12. I just won’t dammit! And it all unravels from there.
Before this day two weeks ago, I had not stepped on my mat for three months. I’ve been having Graves symptoms again – mostly palpitations and tachycardia. This gets really uncomfortable when doing anything physical. So I stopped my practice.
Buuuut…I also stopped meditating. I stopped doing pranayama or chanting as well. I just didn’t come to the mat at all.
I tried and tried to get up in the morning. Set alarms for 6am and hit snooze until 7:30. I just could not haul myself out of bed. Now maybe this had something to do with Graves. Maybe not? I’m not sure. What I do know is that I put on 10 pounds in 3 months.
When we hit our 40s I suppose, staying in bed can do this to us.
Since I’ve been practicing yoga (for around 15 years) it’s been like this. I have periods of taking breaks from it. I’m not saying this is great. It’s much better for us on all levels if we can keep it up daily. But this is just where I’m at right now. I accept.
However the point of this blog post is to tell you that I got back on my mat. The point is to get on with getting back on. What I realized is that yoga is not something that I will ever give up. With age and time breathing down my neck, all I can think about some days is those 80-year-old little old ladies, backs all bent over on their walkers. Old age does not have to look like that! I have known plenty of people in their 70s and 80s now, who are active – who climb mountains, travel the world in their tent and bike to work every day. THAT is the old age I want to have. No nothing’s gonna stop me.
Well, I says to myself, the only way to have that is to be active NOW.
Today I walked home from dropping my boy at summer camp in the early morning. It was sunny and warm but early so not many people around. I stopped in a local coffee shop for a latte. I felt a connection to everyone I spoke with. I met all of their eyes. It was effortless.
Walking home I smiled at folks passing me in the street – said good morning a few times. Then, I walked by the trees on my way home through my neighbourhood, instead of on the sidewalk. I like to do this – feel the bark, say a silent hello. When I got to my Grandpa Tree, a big old maple that Fox has grown up around, I left an offering and stood for a moment gazing up at his branches. I could feel his life-force for a moment. Feel him sway. I could feel his appreciation at seeing me again.
You see, for the past couple months I’ve been walking around feeling a bit dead, a bit disconnected. I would go to my altar dutifully every morning and pray, but feel nothing. Or feel that my guides are trying to speak to me throughout the days but it’s barely audible – like I need a cosmic hearing aid or something. I’ve been frustrated.
But you know it’s been that, ‘when we know something works but just can’t bring ourselves to do it’ for some reason. Like when we are in one head space it can be impossible to understand a previous head space?
Two weeks of yoga every morning and today I walked and marvelled at how large and bright my connection was to All That Is. How my heart-felt like it was pumping out love into the universe with every beat, a soothing balm for all who came into my path.
I’m not sure what finally got me out of bed. One day I got up and said, ‘I’m just going to do some yoga today. Just today. Not tomorrow or for the next week or three months. Just today’.
Then, the next day I said the same thing.
And then the more you do it of course, the better you feel and the more you want to do it again. Then two weeks later you feel like you can talk to trees and heal the world! Well, you get the picture.
Note to self (and to you): Yoga will make it all better. Don’t forget! It always does. Just for today, get back on the horse (mat) yo.
Of all works consisting of sacrifices, or rituals, or control of conduct, or harmlessness, or liberality, or the study of the Vedas; this alone is the highest Dharma (duty) that one should see the Self by yoga.
Featured image, ‘Yoga Double Exposure’ by Victor Tondee via Wikipedia