Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Exploring Humanity

I was reading in one of Pema's books today at work, well, on my lunch break...the title is The Wisdom of No Escape.  (great title, don't ya think?)  Anyway, some lines that stood out to me were "While we are sitting in meditation, we are simply exploring humanity and all of creation in the form of ourselves.  We can become extremely wise and sensitive to all of humanity and the whole universe simply by knowing ourselves, just as we are."

Just as we are.  
Just as we are. 

I repeat that line because that is one of the hardest things for me to do.  whether i am sitting in meditation, on my floor, in my messy apartment...wishing it were neat and i had nicer furniture and maybe a new carpet or better yet, hardwood floors.  or whether i am trying to meditate before yoga class and, as i sit cross-legged i see my bulging belly roll over my tight yoga shorts.  or even if i just nailed standing bow pulling pose like i never have before.  being down or up, judging myself or celebrating myself...these are distractions along the path to knowing myself.  i am not my messy apartment, i am not my big belly, i am not standing bow pulling pose.  i am simply Melissa...sitting, standing, living, breathing.  and you know, i guess i am all of those things i mentioned.  It's just that they don't matter quite as much as i make them out to in my busy, judging mind.

This just as we are thing is going to take some practice.  Which is something this 30 day challenge is totally teaching me about.  today was day 10, one-third of the way there.  I keep thinking in terms of, only two more of that...only two more 10 days, i got that.  But what i have found along the way so far, is this...when you practice something everyday, or at least when i practice Bikram yoga everyday, it gets better and better.  by day 8 i was feeling so strong.  Class was not the struggle it was every time i went on my sporadic "holiday" months.  Yoga class was fun!  I even did a double on day 8, my first.  i just couldn't think of anything else i wanted to do that day but go to yoga.  So, I did.  (thanks to my family, BTW, for being so supportive of this 30 day challenge!)

And then day 9 came, and i didn't have a strong class.  i got all hooked on being strong and capable, and feeling puffed up like i was all that...and then day 9 came.  i could barely do the spine strengthening series, and those are usually my "good" poses.  Just as I am.  I had to lay there in savasana at the end and be ok with how i showed up that day...my mind raced with excuses and rationalizations.  "i did a double the day before."  "i must be tired, i mean, i am a mother of three and i work and i am doing a 30 day challenge, come on."  but it doesn't matter, none of that.  It was just the way i showed up that day, no need for excuses.  just breathing.  being.

and today came day 10.  it wasn't good or bad.  it wasn't even hot.  (I actually wondered in class if i could even count it toward my 30 days...but damn it, i got up for a 6:15am class, it is going to count even if i had to do it in the snow!)  but i was OK with it.    You know, Pema is right...all these emotions i have been feeling are emotions every human experiences.  I am exploring humanity.

Just as I am. 
Just as we are.

Now to get these kids to bed so I can continue my exploration....


jamie said...

Ha! Mo, you're funny. You are a mother of three dammit, you deserve a good savasana!


Leah said...

Thanks Melisssa, this blog is reminding me that everyone struggles, its the continuing to try that makes you amazing. I needed that right now. I'm excited for this new round of good luck with that!!!!

Amy said...

Maybe the old adage: Practice makes perfect. Is actually: Practice makes practice. That said, I am INSPIRED by your continual (and yes I will say it here) practice.