I’m scared. I’m a bit numb. I feel flawed and out done. I see the many many yoga teachers, movement experts and mindfulness teachers who surround me and my comparative mind wanders again and again to “What do I have to contribute?”
The same piece of me watches my family and sees their impact as well. Public school teachers deeply gifted in their craft. A skilled contractor with tangible skills of mind and hand. Understood trades by the veins of our culture.
I feel the odd man out. I feel the black sheep. I feel that with my job – yoga therapist – no one knows what I do or how I do it (sometimes me included). I feel it is simply an apparition. It is not real nor of value. How do I articulate why it helps and how it can help – deeply help – in this world of hard and sharp and fast? How it is helping moment in and moment out. Now.
I feel light and wispy in this moment. Like the wind could blow me around if it desired to. I know I am off. I know that my tejas – my fire – is but a whisper spark. I know this because I feel great fear and doubt in how to step forward. I don’t know how to share this thing that is nebulous and ephemeral. I don’t know how to articulate why it matters. I don’t know how to offer help to those who feel helpless. To those who feel choiceless. To those who feel groundless.
But I know what those things feel like. I remember them from before.
I remember them from now.
Stuck. Small. Tiny. Flimsy. Willow the wisp.
This feeling is uncomfortable. It is sour in my mouth and acidic in my throat. This place of not knowing how to proceed or what to do is twisty in my belly – as if I can feel the coil and wind of my intestines crushed into my abdomen.
I do not like this moment. I do not enjoy it. I do not find pleasure in it. I hate exposing myself to you in my rawness and ramblingness.
But I also know something.
I know it is okay. All of this. Is okay. I know that you feel it too in your own way. I know that I have felt it many times before. And I will feel it many times again. I know that just as the foggy morning greeted me upon early rising today – I could not see the houses surrounding me for the thick of it – this foggy settling around my thoughts and feelings will burn away too. On its time. In its way.
This feels ick. It feels yuck.
It feels like… not knowing.
It feels like… sadness.
It feels like… nature at work through the living of a life.
Yesterday at dinner time, Greg came in the front door. 4 year old Nora vaulted out of her seat and away from my incredible homemade waffles. (My value is still clear to me in the waffle making arena.) She bounded over top of John and Ruthie who were mid-game on the kitchen floor, raced across the living room, down the few stairs into our foyer and leaped into her father’s arms.
she bellowed as she found her stride and destination.
And she is. Nora is undoubtedly the President Hugger of our world.
Her enthusiasm is contagious. I will let it fill me and inspire me now.
I sit in my fog. Not liking it. But also loving it because I know it has something to offer me. In this moment, I don’t feel that I have any great action or skill or knowledge to offer this world. I have a great deal of pondering, reflecting and feeling. But I don’t pretend to know more than anyone else. In fact, I think I may just be the President Not-Knower of our world.
And then I remember a quote from a dear teacher I sat with on Maui last January.
“Not knowing is most intimate.”
Yes. Yes that is a truth. I feel it solid and steady in my bones. Clear and fluid in its light.
So, I will not know. I will trust it. I will love it. I will drink tea with it. I will remember that I am not alone. That I am never alone. And I will wait and see what flower grows from this rich and fertile soil of deep.
Oh, and clearly I’ll accept many hugs from Nora the President Hugger while I wander walk.
With gratitude for your presence,
p.s. If you’d like to join me for a practice – after this super excellent sell of my skills and knowledge – please do signup for YogaFest on Saturday, March 28th in Raleigh. It would be lovely to share time together.