We tend to play the game of Dominoes a lot in our household-
Not the kind of dominoes you might have played as a kid,
But the kind of dominoes where we are trying to line up a list of the ‘to-do’s” for the day with the minute by minute tickings of fast moving clock!
It seems like even the smallest of changes to any family’s schedule can throw the whole, intricately laid game of dominoes completely out of whack- either everything comes crumbling down or nothing will fall into place when one small piece is altered.
Last night, our game of dominoes ended in a turn of events that could have thrown us all into a tailspin of frustration, blame, and hard feelings. A series of unfortunate events led to my being stranded on the way to teaching a yoga class. There were at least SIX dominoes that had been moved every so slightly that led to the demise of my timely and successful arrival at the studio. The absence of ANY one of them would have enabled me to make it okay, but it was the combination that sent the whole line up tumbling to the ground.
I was driving my hubby’s all electric car and had a starting range of 27 miles to make it the 19 miles to class. It was going to be tight- but my hubby was optimistic and I was hopeful that Karma would be on our side. The charge was dying quickly and I tried as hard as I could to maximize my range; I turned of the A/C and the radio, the car automatically turned down all interior lights, and I was driving at a steady and consistent pace regardless of how angry passers by might be. In the end, my best wasn’t good enough because I simply wasn’t ultimately in charge. I had to punt and cancel class just 2 miles from my destination and drive to the nearest charging station.
In raw honesty, I have to confess that I would normally be upset at everyone who had moved those six dominoes- but I knew that NO level of upset would re-charge that battery. It was what it was… and nothing more or less could change the situation.
I had absolutely NO choice but to wait my strandedness out! No one could come and rescue me, no one could come and “jump start” my electric car. I simply had to wait for the process of re-charging.
It was beautiful!!! I was stranded in my favorite of all favorite shopping districts. The second I got out of my car, I heard the jazz music, enjoyed the cool, fall air, and soaked in the sights, sounds, and smells of this wonderful place of peace and serenity. I went to my favorite places-
As I walked through the trails, I heard the strangest combination of music-
From one side of the street, jazz music was playing- calm and relaxing with a charge of energy!
And on the other side of the street, the song “Another One Bites The Dust” from Queen blasted from a car radio!
It should have been distracting, but it was the perfect combination of how I was feeling. I needed the respite from some busy and emotional months, but that rock music seemed to indicate that with each passing moment in this quiet place, another concern was biting the dust. I couldn’t have planned it, but I needed to enjoy it!
It was rejuvenating and it was EXACTLY what I didn’t know I needed!
Although there are many asanas that can be used to begin an Ashtanga practice, I almost ALWAYS start with child’s pose-
I love that this posture brings us to our mat by inviting us to put our heads down and slowly release the distractions of our busy world to another moment.
This is not a ‘bury your head in the sand’ type of posture, but an ‘it can wait a moment while I gather my senses’ type of posture!
It is a strong and an active posture-
It is a heart opening…
Core engaging posture!
I guide my students to reach long through their fingers on each inhale…
And to settle deep, hips pressed to the heels, on each exhale-
This creates space and length in the spine
I love that this space makes room for the upcoming practice,
for the easy postures, the stretching postures, and the balancing or more difficult postures.
I love what this means as I translate it to my life. I don’t need to bury my head, I don’t need shrink from the challenge, BUT I might need a little respite before getting back in the game, I need ONE moment off of the merry go round of life.
It is important to listen to the natural rhythm of your own life. Being stranded might not be what comes to you at your breaking point- it might be a lunch date, a power outage from a storm, an internet crash–
Whatever it is,
avoid judging what has happened and looking for a way to respond or power through.
Rather, enjoy the moment for what it is. I firmly believe it is the energy of your heart, might, mind, and soul trying to care for you in every way that you simply do not realize YOU need.
“Let us relish life as we live it, find joy in the journey, and share our love with friends and family”
Daily Journal Challenge:
What might be YOUR re-charge today? Is there anywhere you can escape to for just one single moment- maybe even a simple memory of your happy place. Let yourself go there, if even for a moment. Reach tall through your hands and settle in with your hips (in a symbolic way) and just let the beauty fill the space you create simply by being and breathing there.