This morning I was blessed to be able to practice my yoga. The teacher’s goal today was to help us learn to fly. My favourite! I think I may have been a bird in another life as I used to look forward to my flying dreams. Sadly, being an adult, those dreams seem to happen very rarely now…something to work toward again. Figure skating at its best for me was when I felt like I was floating or flying. I love scuba diving because it feels weightless, like flying (snorkeling not so much for me as I feel like a sinking stone). Skydiving and bungee jumping gave me those brief moments of the freedom of flying (falling, really).
But, rather than really enjoy it, as I usually do, today was a struggle. I felt more like a heavy brick than a bird. The day before I was thrilled to get up with relative ease into a decent handstand. But today my wings were clipped.
Frustrating. But then again, the lesson was there. Would I have listened to my teacher as closely as I did if I had thought I already knew what to do? Probably not. And really, the point of the lesson was not to actually do the handstand, donkey kicks in lotus pose, or glide through from seated position to chaturanga. The point was to tame the mind with breath, effort, focus, and control. And getting frustrated would not help any of that.
So, back to the breath. The bricks in my body were still there, but perhaps lightened a bit by regained deep and focused breath.
I see this happen with my patients from time to time. They come in frustrated that they have gotten sick or are not sleeping well or are in pain. This is part of living in a body. Sometimes we are given challenges.
This is life. When things get tough and we get frustrated, we need to rethink our lessons. What are we to learn? If your health is frustrating you, is there a reason to refocus your efforts? How can you lighten things up? Maybe it’s breath. Maybe it’s asking for help. Maybe it’s continuing with the effort today so that tomorrow will be less effort.