I get by with a little help.

This week has been…well, almost magical. It seems that just as I needed it, all the support I could ever hope for, all of the love, and friendships, long talks, yoga, and nice weather, all of it showed up at once. Now, I want every week to be this way!

I haven’t written much, instead I have just been soaking in, everything. I have been soaking, steeping, in my emotions (all of them), my thoughts, my daily practices, my life. This life is good. But what makes it so good is all of the people in it. What makes it so good is the ability to take a breath, and look around. To see what is outside of me, and then to dive deep within. This balance of inner and outer has been so sweet this week.

My dreams have always been vivid, lucid even. And sometimes, in yoga nidra, or savasana I can slip into this lucid place. This week I was gifted twice, this ability to slip, into a realm beyond myself. I found myself, in these quiet moments, with eyes closed, both flying though vast galaxies, and swimming within my own body. I found myself happy, and at peace with whatever life chooses to bring my way. The gift of these moments has surely carried over into waking time and space. This is the beauty of this practice.

I heard myself telling a friend this week that my yoga practice has changed. I was comparing myself, my practice, to my practice before my son was born, before pregnancy changed my body and motherhood changed my soul. I said that my practice was not as strong as it had once been. I felt a certain self-consciousness, and sadness admitting this. But looking back, what I should have said is that my practice is not as physical as it had once been. I’m no longer striving towards head stand, or arm balances, at least not regularly. I no longer emphasize core strengthening postures, or treat my yoga practice as a workout. But my practice is strong. In fact, my practice is as strong as it has ever been.

My practice exists in these moments, when I am able to take a breath, and be both outside and within myself. My practice exists when I speak to my son, using every ounce of my being to respond to him in the way that he needs me to. My practice happens from the moment I wake up, looking into his eyes as we lay next to each other, to the moment we fall asleep, our bodies snuggled close, his fingers tangling themselves in my hair. My practice is yoga, it is meditation, it is dharma, it is my life. My practice lives in my heart, and it is strong.

This week reminded me of this fact. All of the people I encountered and spoke with, exchanged thoughts, and hugs, and laughter with, you all reminded me. Thank you. Thank you for reminding me of my own strength. Thank you for showing me yours. Thank you for being. Here. With me. I truly do get by with a little help from my friends.

(Have I ever mentioned how much I love the Beatles?)

Kripalu: Part 1

Ripples of pink light

I’m up at 6:40 am, just missing the start of morning yoga class, but not too late to see the sunrise. Light began to peak over the edges of mountains while I lay curled into my husband’s body. The view from our tiny room and modest bed is spectacular. I try to abide myself with this, but the fresh morning air and magic of the sun’s ascent into the sky is calling me.

So out of bed, sweater and beanie on, I stopped only to fill my thermos with fresh hot water and lemon, my morning ritual. Then down the stairs and out into the brisk winter air I ran (practically). The first inhale of that cold mountain air invaded and enlivened my lungs. Yes. This is it, what I have been looking for. Excitement over the day.

hot water, cold day

Ripples of pink light began to streak through the sky. Slightly hidden by dark grey clouds moving swiftly to the south, they peaked out and filtered slowly into the morning sky. Mountains sat unmoving. Touched, yet un-phased by the moment’s glory. Unlike them, my body fought to be still, to contain the excitement of this simple joy. I tried to capture it, the lens of my camera attempting to grasp this image which was so much more than just light and shadows. Not just sunrise over serene lake and rolling rock formation. No, not just that, but awakening.

My heart has been here a thousand times. This moment, when suddenly all feels new. This moment when dawn touches my face and all is well, all is forgotten or forgiven, or both. This moment of Grace. This moment has belong to me before, or maybe I have belonged to it. We have belonged to each other. A thousand times. And yet each time is different, unique, surprising.

Here it is! (Again!) Just like the start of each new day.