Readers, I had the toughest class today. No joke.
T — O — U — G — H — E — S — T.
It was one of those sweaty sessions where I felt the intense heat as soon as I walked into the class. It was one of those tough, grueling classes where life takes on a vacation-feel for hours afterward.
Here’s a snippet of how those 90 minutes went: To start off with, my energy was completely off-kilter in Standing Deep Breathing so I looked asymmetrical in both sets. I wobbled like jelly all through Awkward, I toppled in Tree, my thigh muscles madly shook in Locust pose, and my heart felt like it was going to beat out of my chest in Savasana after Camel pose. I could only hold 20 seconds in Standing Bow Pulling pose and Triangle…. Triangle went on forever! I thought my legs were going to give way (well, they kinda did) as I repeated to myself — “There is an end to this pose — this pose will end… it will…”
This entire scene has not happened in a while.
It was such a tough class that I haven’t even attempted to rationalize it though I have can list on one hand factors likely in play: a) I had a really emotional weekend (thanks mum, for lending an ear); b) I was dehydrated; c) It was above-average hot in the room; and, d) I’d been reading too many of Deepak Chopra’s books.
These thoughts were caught in my mind’s centrifuge, distracting me to the point that I had to resort to the So Hum meditation mantra to keep cool. It worked for a little bit… I pushed through… “The only way out is through…”
So, when it came to Blowing in Firm pose, I felt like I’d been stretched, baked, and wrung out to the point of rag-doll exhaustion. In that moment, while sitting Japanese style, I was reminded of that big word: humility. I wasn’t upset with the way class had unfolded, or rather, how I had unfolded in class. I actually felt liberated in that yoga still made me feel this way. And, the last thing I wanted to do was “share” this stirring energy with the class. So as we started breathing, instead of breathing out anything negative, I breathed out positivity –love, freedom, joy, serenity, surrender. I breathed the very same in for me too. I’d never done that before. And, it felt good.
After class, as the shower’s three walls supported my nauseous self while I thawed under the cool water, I was reminded of the quote by Isak Dinesen: “The cure for anything is salt water: sweat, tears or the sea.” I’d already sweated, I’d already cried…. I needed to see the sea.
So I went to the Ocean. And I felt even better.
Though the ocean’s wide blue expanse was tinged with grey, I wasn’t bothered. I knew that the thick veil of white covering a blue sky above was a lovely silver lining.