Profile - Archive- RSS
The Birthday Dance - Friday, Dec. 20, 2019
Monday, Mar. 18, 2019 @ 11:41 pm
Flowers everywhere. Crocuses, saffron and violet, sagging in the heat. Plum blossoms emerging on the sheltered streets, pale pink petals falling across the sidewalk, fluttering down in the evening slants of sun. Lawns verdant. Jackets shed, exposing expanses of pale skin. Robins calling out in the evening.
Seeing more apartments. A cute, bright attic with a claw-foot tub, two blocks from the beach. A sprawling heritage unit with achingly beautiful light. I lay awake at night and wonder why I can’t commit to any of them.
Minnow curled up on my lap each night, as I read on the couch.
Minnow curled up between my legs each night, as I sleep in someone else’s bed.
I wake, my top soaked through with sweat. The residual trauma. The shifting of emotions. Sometimes sleep is good, sometimes it never comes. My thoughts slip occasionally down into dark hollows. In those moments, I reach for the sun. I push forth my heart.
I go to yoga, the same classes over and over. His voice cues through the same sequences, and I am barely listening, my body following all on its own. I wonder if he toned down his classes or if I’m stronger, because I rarely shake these days. I push to the deepest level, and I’m met with little resistance. Nothing is difficult anymore.
People keep telling me that I’m brave. That I’m strong. That I am doing ‘so well’. My calm exterior. My capacity to set myself aside and truly and deeply listen to others. In my own trauma, I now see and care about the trauma of others. I am commended for my diligence at work. A friend tells me that I am a good listener. I hear all of these things and hold onto them and pack them in to fill all of my hollow spaces.
The teacher cues us into the final pose. It’s a small class, and he’s known me for many years. I follow his cues and am close to achieving the pose. I am struggling with the last part, which requires a certain commitment to balance, and I’m curious what will happen and fearful of falling out of it in a ridiculous way and am finding the experience of putting my body into this shape interesting and hilarious. All of this is being expressed on my face. I build up courage and lift my heel from the ground and find myself doing it, balancing in this bound half lotus boat something or other, and I’m surprised and happy and proud of myself.
He laughs and says quietly, “I’m watching your expressions, Shannon. It’s great.”
In all the years of classes, I have never heard him break from his teaching monologue like this.
I blush and close my eyes and let all of the warmth sink into my heart.
After class, he turns to me. “I loved watching your face as you found your courage, committed, and then found success. This is why I teach. Witnessing these moments of seeing a student learn something, achieve something, is the best part of my job.”
My face, so openly reflecting my inner world, my emotions, my thoughts.
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?
This. All of this. My aching heart, sunbeams flashing though blowing curtains. The day when someone will trace a path from the nape of my neck to the most tender place between my shoulder blades. Wild and precious.