Thursday, May 29, 2014

Turning the Page

Sometimes change happens so slowly you don't even know it's going on until you find yourself looking out over a new vista and wondering, in the words of David Byrne, "how did I get here?"

This is not one of those times.

This is one of those major shifts that cannot be overlooked. In the space of one week I have been released from ownership of a house in Minneapolis, I have taught my last class at Hiawatha Yoga in Minneapolis (it's been a good run!) and I am turning another year older.

It truly does feel like starting a new chapter. This is an unusual feeling for me, since as I mentioned in my last post, change is not something I am very adept at accepting and embracing. But this time it all feels good-- a testament to my intention earlier this year?

Our intentions are everything. I am mostly a go-with-the-flow type of person, but it's important to realize that we must set our own direction before we can go. Otherwise, whose flow are we going with?

It's a beautiful, well-earned, worth-waiting-for spring. The lilacs, lilies of the valley, crab apples, phlox, irises, even tulips are all blooming at once, as if they just couldn't hold back any longer. Springing forth with uncontained exuberance. That's how I feel, too.

Hiawatha Yoga has been a generous, warm, nurturing home to my yoga classes for exactly 3 years. I feel like I've completed a cycle there, and I am eternally grateful to Sue R. for giving me the opportunity to create my own thing in that beautiful space. I know that it will continue to flourish and bring needed restoration to the wonderful folks in South Mpls.

The house letting-go was a long time coming. Because of the extended time frame between deciding to move out and releasing my financial ties, I had already gone through all the stages of grief and was more than prepared to walk away happy.

This birthday welcomes the new, the exciting and unexpected. In a recent meditation, I envisioned myself as a massive, clear, empty crystal bowl.

Part of this process of change, I'm sure, has been midwifed by my consistent daily yoga practice, which started in earnest on April 21. (Yes, even yoga teachers have resistance to what we know is good for us.) I stopped making excuses and started a practice of getting on the mat every day, for the same practice, no matter what.

It works.

Part of my success in making it happen every day is the fact that I have a regular, simple asana sequence that I don't have to think about. It is therapeutic (for sacrum, which is my trouble spot), so it's never a strain on my body, even if something is feeling weak or inflamed, and it takes about 20-30 minutes to complete, so the time commitment is not intimidating. If I only have 15 minutes, I do it anyway, and just get as far as I can into my sequence before continuing on with my day. The important thing is to do it. Every day. No matter what.

The best part of the daily practice is the palpable transition from monkey mind or physical tension to meditative calm and release. As an added bonus, the savasana portion ensures a daily meditation practice as well.

I look forward to what the new season brings. I hope we can all embrace change with grace and sense of wonder. May you find what you need on your yoga mat and beyond.


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