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Sunday, September 18, 2011


Last week, I sold the children’s swing set. It was a really nice one, with a little tower thingy and three swings; tiny little climbing wall. I remember when we first purchased it. I wondered why I had waited so long; it was magic the way all children would run to it, mostly wanting to swing. Swinging is a lovely, rhythmic way of releasing tension, at least for me; I still love to swing, so I always understood the draw.

But in five short years, the children have outgrown it; probably this Summer was the first lonely Summer for the swing set; the first time it was wished away to make space for soccer and tag.

It feels like a turning point in my parenting life; there was the time OF the swing, and there is the time AFTER the swing.

The children are 13, 11 and 8; each within a few months of a birthday. No more babies in this house; nor toddlers; actually, only one child.

So, I like to think I sorta understand where that is and what that is for them, because I’ve been those ages before and had some of those growing experiences. The question is: what is it, where is it, now, for the adult middle-aged (eek!) woman. You know, me.

I was telling a friend recently, that it’s like climbing a mountain; at this point in parenting, you catch of glimpse of the vast horizon; of a space that isn’t just nose-to-the-trail. During the years of babies; of diapers and runny noses; of learning to do everything, EVERYTHING from walking to talking.

Not to mention just plain trying to keep those creatures ALIVE.

And, suddenly; that’s not your role any more. Even if you thought of your parenting-self as a sculptor; a painter; someone who had a hand in or a major role in their development; the reality is – they are who they are. What you’ve said and taught means very little compared to what you’ve done and what you’ve conveyed with the very essence of your being.

And whether you think you rocked it, or if you just barely escaped, it really doesn’t matter – it just . . . IS. There are no do-overs in this incarnation.

Leaving the grocery store the other evening I ran into a former student; I was rushing home to the children as she ambled into the store. We exchanged hellos and when I asked how she was, she shrugged and said “empty nest now . . . go home and hug your children.”

There’s a really big space in my back yard right now; which I hope is filled with running teenagers, and soccer balls, and who-knows-what after that.

Might be a good time to remember that some day, there might be an even bigger space in my life.



Patience vs. Push

In order to work with the current cycles, I have been spending some time going back through my journals. It helps me to see the patterns; to see the sticky places and the blind spots (though, I guess if they weren’t blind spots they would be easy to see, eh?!).

In my journals I came across an entry from about a year ago where my sister disciple, Gracia, passed a Kriya technique for healing along to me. And THAT reminded me of the little lump in my foot.

See, on the top of my right foot, this odd little hard lump showed up; it was hard, like bone, and right under the skin. It got large enough to stick out, and it really looked icky; it also made it hurt to sit on my feet, which as a yoga teacher, I do a LOT. So, I decided to use this technique on my little lump.

I probably used the technique for a month and a half; really, no more than that, and not even daily. And, right away, I got impatient with the process. Five times; no change; fifteen, twenty times; and my lump, still the same. How great could this technique be if it couldn’t handle my little lump?

So, I stopped the technique, abandoned it really; chalked it up to something that either I wasn’t good at, or just plain didn’t work.

And I had not thought about it for a long time, until I re-read that entry and realized; the lump, it’s gone! I don’t know when it disappeared, but when I reached down to feel for it, there was just a teeny tiny little spot left. Not visible to the eye.

Did the healing technique do the trick? Was it my desire for it to go away? What happened here? And why, why, was I so impatient?

Actually, patience factors into everything in my life; living, loving, parenting, teaching, growing, learning, healing; where is it that patience is not required?

So, I’m thinking now – what other bit of fabulousness have I glossed over because I didn’t take the time; because I didn’t devote the minutes, the hours, the years? And the flip side of that is – where have I been WASTING time; throwing minutes and hours and years at things that are not growing, that are not evolving; that just aren’t taking me where I need to go?

The ever-present issue of where to lean into Life, and where to ease up? Push vs. Patience.

If you’ve figured it out, please let me know; in the meantime, I think I’ll pick that healing technique back up and work on it; I am thinking it belongs in my practices. But I also must re-examine my life -- where I am spending those minutes, those hours, those years? What is taking time away from what matters? From what is real? From what is true? From what . . . matters to me? Hmmmmm . . . .
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