She stopped. Sat down.
Breathed. Ventured within.
As her shoulders relaxed away from her ears
She could hear the same old fears
rattling around her brain,
clamoring for attention.
She dropped her awareness deeper,
all the way down into her belly.
There she felt the ancient tension
of the ones who struggled for survival,
the ones who toiled and strained
and numbed their pain
with the fruit of the vine
again and again.
Then she prayed,
calling in the Angels,
The Teachers, The Wise Ones,
The Guides, The Ascended Masters,
The Well Ancestors:
Thank you for being present.
Thank you for holding me
in your Matrix of Light.
Thank you for rewiring my neural circuitry.
Thank you for restructuring my DNA.
Thank you for helping me to
see what needs to be seen,
do what needs to be done,
hear what needs to be heard,
forgive what needs to be forgiven,
heal what needs to be healed…
Breath by breath,
forward and backward,
across all time and all space,
she sits complete within herself
in the center of this Universal Mandala
feeling and knowing
ALL IS WELL.
Slowing down, taking time…
Body run down
says Stop. Rest.
I rest as much as I can
in between classes.
It would be so easy to blame.
To go back into victim mode
and complain about the upheaval.
But that’s not congruent with who I am.
Who I am is strong.
Who I am is loving.
Who I am is resourceful, creative, inspired.
Who I am is kind.
So instead of looking out and blaming,
I look in and ask,
What can be done now?
My body says Rest.
I listen. I rest.
Taking time to slow down and rest,
to be quiet and still and listen,
to let my awareness settle,
and feel my whole body alive in this moment.
On retreat I deeply feel and know
how important it is to slow down and take time
to just be.
Day to day living is hectic, chaotic;
disengaging from this frenetic pace
I can see how I’ve been pushing, pushing,
trying to get things done,
but never taking time to just be.
I can feel my body is exhausted;
I’ve been asking so much of it.
This whole weekend has been
one long exhale, finding presence,
remembering that there is nowhere else
but this moment, and I’m home.
Was able to pay the dentist
right after having my teeth cleaned
(not cheap, out of pocket)
when the last two times before today
I had to say
Please mail me the invoice.
Thinking ahead about finding enough work
I reached out to my colleagues
and asked them to consider me
if they needed coverage for their classes.
I cooked an amazing dinner
for myself and my kids
and ate heartily
(yes, the woman who was diagnosed with anorexia
a year and a half ago, who was down to 98 lbs, yes,
that woman ate well and enjoyed her food)
And the biggest progress of all:
I feel good.
Let me say that again:
I FEEL GOOD
I FEEL GOOD!
I was talking with a friend about wealth…
She said that I am far wealthier
than some ultra wealthy people
who have amassed incredible material wealth.
She said that I am far wealthier than they
in terms of my ability to feel happy and fulfilled
and to experience peace in the present moment…
And I got to thinking about my two children,
how bright, and healthy and beautiful they are,
and my yoga and meditation practice,
my work teaching yoga,
the talents God has given me
to write, to draw, to sing, to move
with my heart.
I thought about my bank account,
and although it’s presently modest,
I can feel grateful and proud about
how hard I’ve been working
to achieve financial stability,
several months of sobriety under my belt,
maintaining consistency in my spiritual practice,
gratitude journaling every night,
pausing and appreciating nature in its many forms,
the changes of the seasons,
the fact I can see and hear and smell and taste and touch
this present moment, alive in my body,
alive all around me…
And the connection, the human connection
that my work gives me,
spending time with beloveds who actually
choose me as their teacher,
who come back not because they have to,
but because they want to—
And I realize that yes, yes indeed—
I am ultra wealthy.
If it were easy to train your brain
everyone would be doing it.
It is, in fact, one of the most
difficult things to do in the world.
When you install a new habit,
you are actually changing the
physical structure of your brain.
New circuits are created,
old ones are pruned.
While the new is being established
the old seems to redouble its efforts
to keep you the way you’ve always been.
We equate familiarity with safety
even when the familiar is killing us.
If you are trying to replace
an old unhealthy habit
with a new healthy one
I hope you know how strong you are.
I hope you can take moments
to celebrate yourself
for living all the way to this point
and for taking charge
of the way your future will take shape
by attending to this now.
Happy brain training, friends…
my beautiful, strong, courageous friends.
I give the good medicine that heals.
My voice carries magic
that soothes, uplifts and restores.
My touch brings life and renewal.
I watch as tension melts away
and peace returns to those
who come seeking the healing I offer.
I instruct them to remain present.
I remind them that we only have this now.
I can articulate perfectly
how our brains are hardwired
to remember negative information,
and how there is so much hope
our brain’s capacity to be reshaped.
I marvel at this ability
to give my students what they need,
to instruct poses that strengthen,
balance, reshape and empower,
to guide their breathing,
slow their heart rates
and allow the present moment
to blossom like a flower within them.
But when it’s time for me
to take my own medicine—
well, let’s just say
that I’m a wonderful doctor
but a terrible patient.