The alarm goes off at 6am.
No, I can’t do it.
Every week I think of 7am Qi Gong downtown. Sometimes I make it.
But this is the time of savor. This is the time of doing what I want and not making a job out of it.
I get up.
I sing in the car on the way to wake up and prepare for the song I am learning.
On the floor, first time through the form, I savor the deliciousness of being in my own body, feeling grounded. I recently discovered that if I eat breakfast before class – not just a smoothie – it is so much better. I really stretch, toe to torso to fingers and it feels whole, nourishing. Before we come to the end of the form, everything shifts and I am light-headed.
Dammit. I’ve left class because of dizziness and I do not want to leave. Stick it out, girlfriend. Be tough. Well, it’s not about being tough. That way will result in you passing out. It’s about figuring it out. Navigating.
So the second time through the form, I do it small. I focus on the furnace within and consider any stretching as an expression of containment. Locked in, except for when my mind drifts, not leaving my body. My world is here and I modulate the boundaries, all being sacred but the center being here. Not there. Success.
Afterwards, I stop by one of the last earthy cafes in town, looking for familiar comfort, the same old tables, the good smells and ambiance. But it am early. It smells like burning, there is a couple talking too loudly and the staff doesn’t realize in their rush to get the place open that the music is too low. The walls are bare and echoey; they must be between artists.
“This is just an empty shell”, I think. “Like any other room.”
I recover quickly from my disappointment and then it feels exciting, the cool, the starkness, knowing that the fun is in my heart and no one can take it away. I ask them to turn the music up and soon, the couple leaves. Before my breakfast is ready, yummy smells waft from the kitchen. The cafe resumes it’s earthiness, but with me in better awareness.
It’s not enough to get away, to shut those things out that have been eating at your soul.
It’s not enough to find a safe space and hunker down.
It’s not enough to clear the debris and dig into the foundation, to break through to fertile ground and feel again.
It’s not enough to dream and sort things through and find reason and plant a few seeds.
You gotta grow a garden.
You can’t go out into that world without your garden. A rich, dense, undiscovered area to the rest of the world that you may or may not give access to.
Otherwise you are just setting yourself up for defeat again. The wheel of defeat and recovery is too small. Get on the greater wheel, the one that includes the expanse of life not just reached but lived.
Know yourself without trauma and you will never want to go back.