I love that quote from Rumi. In life that is so true. The holding and the releasing. If we are not aware the balance is gone, how can we change, how can we regain it?
I think about balance a lot, often very literally. One of the main reasons I started yoga was because I have balance issues and I wanted to address them. I’m getting older, old people fall, break hips and die in nursing homes (think I might be awful-ising a bit?) But it’s true, physical balance is very important, and I didn’t have it.
And still don’t.
That pisses me off. I expected to be way better at balancing than I am after as much yoga as I do. I see a small improvement, but it’s not enough. NOT ENOUGH! I had a conversation with one of my teachers after a class yesterday in which I had been VERY frustrated with myself. I mentioned the teacher training, how could I do that if I can’t even do a simple, solid, tree pose for fuck’s sake? How embarrassing will it be to be in training and not be able to pop into an easy pose like Crescent, where both feet are still on the ground? I wobble in Triangle pose, waver in Warrior 2. I was really hurting yesterday, or causing myself hurt.
When I take a moment and breathe and look at the big picture, I see remarkable growth. The things I am physically able to do, the strength I have, has improved by leaps and bounds. I can’t pop up into Crescent, but when I get in it I can hold it. And I can do a tree pose on a good day and a great triangle when I use a block. My teacher reminded me of how far I have come and how ready I am to go deeper, which I appreciated.
The main thing, however, is the way I am becoming more balanced in life, not physically but emotionally. I am so much more balanced than I have ever been. My yoga and meditation have me emotionally balanced to a degree I cannot remember. EVER.
I am not kidding.
And that kind of balance is priceless, because even if I do fall over and break a hip and go into a nursing home….well, I’ll be able to handle it better. I am more emotionally balanced. My friendships are more balanced, my relationship with my son is more balanced. My relationship with myself is SO much more balanced, and that is what it really comes down to.
I practice both Yin Yoga, and Yang versions, keeping a balance between to two styles and loving both of them. And I keep a much more balanced grasp on my emotions, they don’t own me like they used to. I am in both a different physical and mental space, and it feels so good. I hold on a lot, but oh how I have been able to let go.
So now,when I fall over in class, I intend to use it as a reminder of how truly balanced I have become.