Friday, July 2, 2010

Travel Hell

A few scenes from my practice Thursday before class. Lotus handstand. (those of you in class for all that opening up lotus work, this is part of what we are doing with that.)On the way down...
kukkutasana. (Yes, Scott, one day I will press back up...)
Classes were fun Thursday night. I recorded them both so hopefully they will be downloadable soon. After class, Kelly and I went to dinner over at Celeste and Shannon's which was fun. I came home, did some work and then packed. Late night and an early morning today. Which brings us to today's saga.

Okay, so wow- today is kind of what we, in my family refer too as a day of "travel hell." Mom came to pick me and Kelly up this morning at 9:30 to take us to the airport. Our flight to Houston boarded on time and then as we sat on the runway, they announced we would be de-plaining due to delays and re-routing in Houston. We would borad again within two hours. Which we did. And we got to Houston. But our flight was cancelled. And the second flight was cancelled. And then all flights to Albuquerque were cancelled until late saturday afternoon. And the earliest flight back to Austin was at 9:30 at tonight tonight. But it was probably going to get cancelled as well, they said. So, long story short, we rented a car, drove home and 11 hours after we left home, we are back in our house, checking email and unpacking our bags and so forth. Whew.

I am a bit bummed because I Was really looking forward to spending the weekend in Santa Fe and being with my friends Darren, Brownwyn, Wendy and Halid. I also was expecting to see so many other folks like Sundari and Michaela and Bea who all told me they would be there. But anyway, it was not to be. Maybe another time in the future we can reschedule. I hope so.

But I am also a bit delighted to see a whole weekend stretch out in front of me to dedicate to launching the pod casts and to having more time to practice and rest. So this is a case where lemons will become lemonade pretty easily. I have already filled up the weekend in my mind with things I want to do now that I am home.

And the day was not a whole waste. I spent some time talking with the wonderful Melanie Smith, owner of Yogaphoria about collaborating on some future projects. That was fun. She is smart, funny, sincere, direct, passionate and committed to transformation- all things I love in a person- and we had a very inspiring talk about health, diet, wellness, yoga and how to assist people in their journey through diverse and complimentary modalities. It was really cool to talk to her and to hear about how she is shifting the focus of her work and her business to be even more aligned with Inner Health and Wellness. Very cool. Very timely. Very visionary.

Also, I had a great time in the car talking with Kelly. We talked a lot about how important it is to have faith when we are in the process of growth and change and embarking on new journeys. He is in school right now and so the perennial question people ask him is 'What next?" which is a very sincere conversation starter and such. But what is next, is really, just the next test, the next concept, the next learning challenge for the stage he is in- which is school. How it is all going to play out and what it is going to look like in terms of "the job after school" is just hard to know exactly right now.

But the mind, the intellect, wants to know. Inquiring minds always want to know. And all that is fine. What isn't fine, is when we turn on ourselves when we do not know. It is not always so easy is to have equanimity in the "not knowing." And not just equanimity but a sense even of faith and trust that it will work out. I wrote a while ago that I am not really a planner. I mean, on one level I am. I make plans all the time, I pour energy into projects, many of which are successful, some of which are not, and so on. And so I make plans and I get things done and so on. All that is true.

And yet, equally true is that life holds surprises and unforeseen opportunities present themselves and connections get made in ways that cannot be planned or predicted. I do think we can prepare ourselves but the preparation, I believe, is really in just mastering the tasks that are right in front of us, not in some big organized plan of preparation. And many times, we are in the dark about what our current challenges are preparing us for.

For instance, over 20 years ago I was in treatment for bulimia and depression for 18 months in a residential program and the "snapshot" of my life at that time was pretty bleak. Seriously, it was not a pretty time. I had no idea then, that the time spent in all that group therapy, in all those deep discussions and sobering confrontations with myself and others, were for anything other than just saving my life. That was my focus. Get my head out of the toilet and live another day.

But 20+ years later, I can see that those days started me on a path of self-reflection, honesty and vulnerability that prepared me to facilitate deep and profound discussions in the workshops I teach and gave me a depth and insight into myself and others that could never have come from just reading about inner work in a book. I lived it. I walked the path and in doing what was immediate, Real and necessary to that phase, I was led to the next phase and the next phase and the next phase. I seriously think I am good at what I do, not because of what I know about trikonasana (Although I do know some good stuff about that pose, let's be clear!) but because of what I learned all those years ago in treatment.

So, I have a lot of faith in the process of living authentically. I really do. It has led me great places. It requires tremendous effort and I am not in anyway light about what it means to me. But I really believe that the fullness of each moment seeds the next moment and so when we engage our current situation clearly, fully, and authentically, the momentum we create for the next moment is optimized. And I believe then, the Universe moves on our behalf. ANd it is usually better than what we planned.

Now there is one more thing I must add to the discussion before I close for tonight. I not only trust the process of living authentically, I have tremendous faith in the longing to Serve. I mean, if what we really want is to Help--not just to look good, be famous, get rich, be noticed and validated and so forth-- but if we really want to Serve, the Universe will move mountains- internally and externally- to give us opportunity and to prepare us to make use of it. The opportunities may be grand or small in scale, according to our purpose and depending on our temperament, etc. But no way, no how, will the Great Supreme consciousness overlook anyone out there willing to work for the Light. No way. Why would it?

Seriously, it may be a bleak hour in our own or in someone we know's life right now. But how do we know that we are not being purified, given the opportunity to clear some baggage out of the way so that we can grow into who we are meant to be so that we can be of greater service. Todays troubles, when faced squarely, when engaged fully and skillfully, become tomorrow's compassion and the very source of the Light we offer to others.

So like that.


Aimee Michelle Roberson said...

You rock, woman! I can hardly wait for the video podcasts - cheers!

Marcia Tullous said...


Well written. I am sorry that you did not get to go to Santa Fe but am glad you and Kelley made it home.

Many Thanks,

kayakgal said...

Thanks for this great blog. I am going through a great transformation period in my life right now and what you wrote is just what I needed today to remind me of how this process and transformation takes place. When all I really want is a magic wand. My yoga instructor told me just the other day "sometimes you forget what you already know.". Again thanks for this reminder.

Anonymous said...

I have been focusing this week in my classes on the elegance and sequential nature of the UPAs and how the fullness of the preceding UPA naturally leads to the subsequent one. Leaving Austin and leaving teaching full time, I have been reflecting on the past years of my teaching experience. Like when I was obsessed with getting inspired status. All I thought about was that for so long and then, when I got it, I didn't really care about it anymore (or ins the same way at least) kaushika (vishvamitra) and vasista's cow, nanda. The status came from the fullness of my participation with the steps of initiation, the status just came as a natural expression of my sadhana, like you said it would.