on the mat is a state of mind
Given that this week is an excavation of sorts, I’m setting some goals, but also staying open to whatever comes up. I was hoping to write about letting go of false expectations and gratuitous emotional baggage, but that’s just not how things played out.
Skipping to the takeaway, what I felt was heartache that took my breath away. I had a love that wasn’t rational (or functional), but it was honest. It was pure connection – just the magic that happens between two people sometimes, for better or worse. And while I thought the letting go came with the ambivalence I’d mastered months ago, I realized as I lay there feeling (acutely) the negative space in my heart – however full of possibility (barf) -that I was letting go by recognizing the loss.
I think as yogis we are very cavalier about “letting go,” as we try to skip straight to the ecstatic liberation that will surely follow – but often we are really just saying “I don’t give a shit” and hoping for a little relief from the pressure of caring so much. Tonight, I felt the difference.
Digging in, very aware of my expectations and making sure that I was setting my own standard, actively working toward the lofty goal of self-validation and trying to pay less attention to how Warrior II makes my butt look, it became so obvious where I’d been seeking affirmation from others and so unsurprising that I’d found dead ends at every turn.
Here’s the lesson, Cates: you’re going to have to take care of this one yourself.
So in spite of the tears, I did in fact let go of what I wanted my practice to be (all lessons and lightness) and owned up to what it is: sweaty, surprising and tough. I did the work, and I got somewhere even if it wasn’t as pretty as what I was hoping for. Yoga is messy and I am okay with that and lucky to have a studio where such realizations (and crying in savasana) are not only accepted, but encouraged.
How’s that for some EatPrayLove shit on Day 2?