It’s the little things…

I’ve finally felt confident enough to stand closer to the mirrors in yoga class. After 5 months of practicing I’ve noticed an influx of newbies, brought by New Year resolutions and a Groupon offer, and have felt bad taking up room in the back of the class when I know the bikram series and can reasonably make it through the whole 90 minutes without spending half of it on my back in savasana. The first few times up close to the mirror went well, but then…

I got distracted.

We’re supposed to “look one place, at yourself, in the mirror,” and I began meditating on the tip of my nose. I could make half eye contact with myself and see my body as I bent into the poses. But then I started to notice my nose. The nose ring on the left side. The nostrils. Oh god, the nostrils.

I became obsessed with my nostrils. Have you ever really looked at your nose? Well, my nostrils are uneven. Lopsided. One side of my nose is higher than others. And I couldn’t stop looking at it, obsessing, analyzing.

I should have been focused on the postures, but I couldn’t stop thinking about how un-perfect my nose was. The next class I stepped back a few feet so that I wasn’t getting such close up look at the HORRIBLE CHARACTER FLAW lack of facial perfection. I needed to take a step back and focus softly, seeing myself, my practice, my life from a slight distance, because too zoomed in I got overly picky on a detail that I can’t change anyway.

Well, there’s always a nose job, right?


Focus, Intention, Purpose

ImageThe last few weeks at work have been hard. I wonder if they’ve FELT harder than they actually have been, though, since I tend to project anxiety and fear and frustration onto events and then focus on them intently. It’s like a meditation, an object of focus, and that tends to be the fear/anxiety/frustration spot that my mind rests on, rather than on the wide open space between all of the crises that arise. I think that’s the largest challenge in my line of work…navigating the space between the fires I have to put out.

So, this week I’ve been trying to focus on the large gaps of amazing time I get to spend with Potamus, as this summer IS slower than the busy season. I am also trying to focus on setting an intention for the future, but not trying to propel my anxious self too far ahead. It’s like that biblical verse about only fretting about today because tomorrow will take care of itself. I tend to try and project my current, very anxious preoccupied self, into the future, and into the busy season and think “oh my god, I can’t handle this. I can’t handle workin 16 hour days and shuffling my baby around between places.” But truthfully, that ISN’T happening (yet), as I am currently at home watching The Olympics with Potamus snoozing peacefully in our bed. It’s his 2nd nap of the day and it’s not even 1pm. Not stressfull. No crisis here, and with only 1 client on my caseload (and they are currently in the inpatient unit) I don’t have a whole lot to do.

So I’ve tried to open my heart, set an intention toward abundance and structure in the job department..or in the life department actually. The last time I did this, when I was in a session with Courtney, I ended up having the craziest experience afterward: I got a new job, found out I was pregnant and bought a new house…all within a few months. I was at a place where I was open to change, to abundance, to newness and fullness, but lately I’ve felt small and constricted, like the Grinch who’s heart was too small. My heart feels like a raisin that’s additionally dried out and shrivelly because it was kicked under the couch and has been relaxing next to lint for the past 7 weeks.

I’ve noticed a subtle shift inside me because of this new focus. I’ve actually found several jobs online that I think I would love AND fit my criteria of part-time or structure. Hmm, perhaps my whole world doesn’t hinge on one perfect position. Perhaps, as Anne Lamott says, I can just hop from stepping stone spotlight to the next. Even simply seeing different options for work gives me hope.