Week 4: Balance

In the first weeks, I was rigid. Strict eating plan, strict with working out every day. I didn’t work my way up to my goal, which was working out several times a day; an unexpected trip, and Yoda’s theme intervened.

During that trip, I had a morning of complete dissolving. When I arrived and walked into a lovely, serene, spotless hotel room to myself, I collapsed, like someone had cut the puppet strings that held me. I crawled into bed, slept for the first time in a month, and simply couldn’t move.

I worried that I was likely being rude to the friend and his partner who brought me there and gifted me this – but I was so exhausted, even the anxiety couldn’t make itself heard beyond a few uneasy stirrings that had me text them to communicate that I was so very grateful, hoped I wasn’t being rude, and that I cared very much about them & about seeing them.

Then, I just climbed into a Dagobah of my own, mist and fog muffling everything.

Photo by Elizabeth McGuire w/edit by me;) – thank you Eliz ❤️

I was coherent enough to order room service for the next morning and hang the menu/do not disturb sign on the door, since I wasn’t going to move enough to get food.

Room service breakfast with a pristine down comforter to luxuriate in turns out to be one of my favorite things in this lifetime.

It reminds me of mornings in Switzerland with the cow bells faintly singing into the window through which I can see the brilliant green of hillside, as the fresh crisp breeze flirts with white curtains that filter the morning light to a glowing haze that sparkles on silver coffee pot, and dances in the steam curling from a freshly poured cup.

Yes, mornings in Switzerland are a run-on sentence; I could drape words around the memory all day, and still not feel I’ve conveyed the deep peace, comfort, beauty, and feeling of complete bliss.

It reminds me of England, where the ritual of breakfast (and tea, later on-) was an important time, a respected institution that felt established to remind me that my needs were important, and that enjoyment of taking nourishment was absolutely expected.

And then -I’ve written to you about the concert.

When I came home, something had shifted. I have felt buoyant, joyous, with more playful energy than I know what to do with.

I’ve plunged back into building fiction again in a way that’s been missing from my psyche for years. Just notes and short stories, thus far, but back to plot crafting in the worlds I began long ago. It’s back- the inspiration is back.

I can’t tell you what it means to have that precious stream flowing back in after years of agonizing chiseling away at dry, cracked and hardened earth- but if you work in a creative field, you will understand.

I had so much playful energy, the hard work went out the window. I’ve had to keep up with my commitments, but exercise has taken the form of yoga, lighter weight lifting, and walking for hours.

I had my first foray with the group I’ll be volunteering with, and I learned the importance of not waiting for my “perfect superhero physique” before I don my montrals. Ahsoka has tight leggings and a backless, sleeveless minidress, but I put it on even though I don’t feel “superhero” enough yet. But I’m getting there –

And what I learned was that it’s not about me at all. It’s not about my physique or my age or whatever. It’s about holding the line for that person crossing the finish line in their own victory lap. It’s about holding out my lightsaber for a little girl and letting her find out she’s strong enough to hold that heavy thing all by herself.

And I lost my balance. I overindulged in play. I’m exhausted. I’m depleted, but I am finding my way back to wholeness through connecting with friends and new people, and my own sparks of joy.

So. Week 5 is going to be about creating the balance.

“You are a dragon,” my therapist said to me. “I can see it. You’re a protector and you’re so strong, but you shrank it because you wanted to hold others up.” You didn’t ever have to shrink. Grow and breathe fire. Others can take care of themselves and find their own strength, or not, that’s their own lesson – you won’t help anyone by being afraid to be strong.

He may have not said those exact words all at once, but that’s the gist.

Balance takes a lot of small constant adjustments and awareness. The quickest way to be fully present, is to stand on one of those wobbly things that requires you to balance. It’s the same way in life. A little too far this way, a little too far that- and oh, the peace, for a moment, of “just right.”

Week 5 will be balance training. I’ve got this- I’m a dragon, after all –

Photo by Aki Kiriyama. Thank you, Aki! ❤️

Creative edit by Adam Browne. Thank you, Adam! ❤️

2 thoughts on “Week 4: Balance

  1. Ah. This is the essence, the final spoke in the wheel that makes it go around, the hum one can hear the universe sing if one carefully listens.
    You and the Dalai Lama are in accord about the same important lesson:
    “With realization of one’s own potential and self-confidence in one’s ability, one can build a better world
    – Dalai Lama”

    Like

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