Thursday, June 02, 2011

edge or ego

sophie stopped herself short when she was talking about going to the edge in yoga. i wish she would have continued speaking, those are always the words i want to hear, the ones not said. my nature, i guess. so today when i saw her i mentioned how i appreciated what she was saying.

she went on,
breathe (imagine everything in a heavily eurpoean accent, like there are ds where none exist).

when you get to the edge,
she said.
transformation is possible. why do we come for yoga lessons. to gain strength and flexibility at first, maybe. then you realize it is much more.

will you be gone,
i asked. i had overheard her talking last week. the dates overlap mine somewhat, i had hoped considerably, but she will be gone a month longer than i. which bums me out.

she will come. she is very good.
she reassured me.

i realize that these women are really affecting me, helping me deal with the many things on my plate. helping me find my breath, reconnect with my body.

yoga is a conversation between your mind and your body,
sophie says.

i looked down at my foot today and it wasn't nearly as bulbous as it has been recently. this is cause for celebration. i have a long way yet to go.

so the ego comes in,
sophie says,
when you're holding a position not because it's your edge, but because everyone else is
and there is some pride involved.
this is just ego,
she says,
not transformation.

i am trying to learn when to let go.

yet i'm finding i can release and breathe and fall deeper into a stretch, today was hamstrings. provided i'm in the right position, i can sink and lift and stretch farther than i thought possible.

i enjoy the openness of a backbend. can i do it very far or very long, no. but something about opening oneself completely. i didn't think i could find my heels until today, which was probably the fifth time i've done the pose, and each time swung my arms around, flailed them about, unable to connect with my heels.

yet today, when i sank back into the bend, touching heels, it was quite a moment. i get images in my head of limbs snapping off because the stretches are so deep and awkward at times, but i don't think anyone's limbs have snapped off lately, though often mine feel as if they will.

i think when i go to my sister's i will try to keep up this practice of five times a week yoga. it won't be the same not in a class, but it's not the class that i'm after. it's the centering. the silence. the release. ultimately, this changes my body. and my mind.

that is why i take yoga lessons.

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