I have not posted in awhile because I have been away at Kripalu Center for Yoga and Health, known to it's regulars as k-world or the mother ship. Being at Kripalu, even when I am assisting or working in a program, is like landing on a different planet. The place is steeped in spiritual energy and prayer, it's surroundings are breathtaking, the people are yoga people, enough said, and I get a change of pace from my usual life. While I am at Kripalu I only have me to take care of, I eat delicious and healthy meals that I had no part in preparing, no cleaning, no driving, no television or phone ringing, no loud anxious society, none of that. I have time and space to move mindfully, to focus on one thing at a time, and to luxuriate in my own experience. Now, being in yoga programs and assisting them, like anything in life, can bring up "stuff" and present challenges. This week brought many pieces of myself to the surface, some wonderful and some difficult, it was a week of work and play, dancing and yoga, and of course ups and downs ready for examination. ( Look for details of those experiences and awakenings in posts soon to come)
Then comes the day when I pack up, say "see ya later", and come home. Most anyone I have ever talked to who has gone to Kripalu and gone home has agreed that this is usually a rough landing. The transition back to "real world" feels abrupt and shocking. The world's normal hum of business, noise and hyperactivity are unsettling, and being thrown back into the realm of multiple responsibilities and many "to does" makes me almost crumble. My inner voice screams,"Give me back the peace and serenity, give me back the community of support, give me back a life of yoga and dance, give me back the BUFFET!!!" In fact right now I sit here writing this to avoid for a moment longer, beds to make, laundry to fold , bathrooms to clean, kids to attend to, and the list goes on. I feel overwhelmed and irritated, flustered and resistant. I love my life, but these transitions ruffle my feathers.
But here is where everything comes together, what the practice is all about. Even now, in these moments of tension and agitation I can come back to the breath. Here is where all that practice and experience of the last week comes to fruition. How might I enter this dance and find the grace and flow? How can I hold and experience this posture and all the wealth it has to offer? I can make that mountain of laundry an experience of misery or it could be a meditation of breath and presence. I can attend to my family with impatience or find my tenderness and compassion, my metta. These yoga practices are quite easy in the arms of Kripalu Center but the real test is here in the home with the family. One step at a time now, one thing at a time, it all unfolds with purpose, but watch that first step it's a doozy.