September has been a month of whirlwind activity. I turned 30, my husband and I celebrated our 5 yr wedding anniversary, our son turned 2 yrs old, I attended Level 2 with Baron Baptiste, my poem, A Walk In My Shoes, was selected for publishing in the book The Poetry of Yoga, my husband and I performed in a 9/11 memorial concert, and I received the last few donations needed to reach my fundraising goal for my trip to Haiti!
~Insert deep breath here~
Reflecting on such a big month and reaching my 30 yr milestone, I’ve found myself thinking about what I’ve learned, unlearned, and simply don’t know. I’d like to share with you a few things I am certain of, at least at this point in my life:
1. Do What You Do and Don’t Worry
I turned 30yrs old while at Level 2 in Balcones Springs, TX. My cell phone service was shotty at best while in Texas. I got lucky with one bar of reception near a cow pasture not too far from my cabin. The morning of my 30th birthday I checked my phone messages and had a message from my hubby. The message he left was a Mary Oliver poem he recited. In this poem a little bird is busying itself in a Pepper Tree. Just doing what it does, dipping from branch to branch and then fluttering away. The poem ends with, “a name is not a leash.” I often and easily can find myself leashed to titles, labels, or the lack thereof. This poem reminded me that what I do and who I am are two completely different things. Instead of being leashed to labels, titles etc…I’m just going to do what I do and not worry. I think this may also be known as FREEDOM!
(PS – this lesson can also be witnessed in any child under the age of five. Talk about doing what you do without worry!)
2. NOW Is All We Have
2 days before I left for Level 2, I got a real dose of what it meant to be Here and Now. My dog had been recently diagnosed with a rare blood disease. She was responding well to her meds, but then took a turn for the worse. We were faced with the choice to either put her out of her misery or she would internally bleed to death. We opted for the former. I called our vet at 10am and asked if she could come to our house and help us say goodbye to Hazel. She could, but she wasn’t available until 2pm.
I sat with my dog for four hours knowing that these would be the last four hours of her physical existence. In four hours she would no longer be in our home, she would no longer be alive. It was such an odd experience. Knowing exactly when her life would end made my NOW glaringly obvious. I just laid next to her, sang to her, thanked her for being such a great companion, brushed her and tried to make her comfortable. By 2:15pm her soul had passed on. I was grateful or the mindful, purposeful NOW I got to spend with her. Not everyone I know and love will pass on a given day at a given time. Loving them fully NOW is the most important thing I can ever do.
3. You’ve Got To Get Out And Move (or, Play Is Waaaaay Easier)
As I referenced in my last post, it is so easy to get stuck. In physical places, in relationships, and in our head. The best thing to do when stuck – — get energy moving again! For me this is literally getting outdoors and moving. A walk through my neighborhood or the woods, Sun Salutations on my back porch, or chasing my son through the park. Getting endorphins moving through my body helps me to realize that all is pretty darn good in the world. Even if I don’t understand why, I feel better and that’s all that matters.
(PS – another lesson to be learned from watching children)
4. I Matter And I Don’t Have To Prove That To You
To expand on this one would do the power of this statement a disservice. Just let it sink in. You’ll be smiling soon enough.
5. Don’t Be Afraid To Share
This one can be immediately powerful. Sharing opens. Sharing connects. Sharing helps us to realize we are not alone. Sharing helps us to see the human-ness in others. And when combined with #1 and #4, sharing becomes a whole new ball game.
Thanks for letting me share with you. xoxo!