I turned 28 last week, and with that came the responsibility of looking back on success, failure, and of course whether or not we remain stagnant in our goals. Success is usually tied with money, how others perceive us, but more importantly how we perceive ourselves. I’d like to believe I’m less concerned with the first two, but they consume me.
On a (torrential) stormy evening, I begrudgingly left my home to attend a Vinyasa class on a Friday. I was in a hurry, collecting my things haphazardly and not even bothering to wear my shoes correctly as I ran out the door. My feet landed in a messy puddle, mulch and dirt swished between my toes. In my attempt to adjust my sloppy way of walking, I dropped my belongings and out popped my phone. My sacred phone.
I got into my car and pretended I was actually helping it by shaking it violently. I then turned it off, and drove to my class. The room was quiet as my feet stickily padded their way in. I sat on my mat and realized with some pleasure (but also intimidation) we had a small, cozy class. Richard, our teacher, asked the four of us, “Why do you do yoga?”
No one answered, everyone glanced shyly at each other. I finally said, “To calm myself down.”
There were a few mumbled agreements. Richard recited a quote about the very thing I brought up. I wish I could remember it, or who it belonged to, but he basically said meditation, through yoga, mindful breathing, and emptying one’s “monkey mind” is how we achieve that calm we crave so much.
It was a solid ending to a strange birthday week. One where I was incredibly hard on myself despite my achievements. I finally got into Crow for the first time, and that elated me. I did free my pesky monkey mind, and suddenly my phone was the least important thing in the world as my toes touched.
After class, I thought back on who I was at 27. Instead of trying to list off what I had/didn’t have back then – I thought, “Hey, I was a cool chick that year.”
I’m gonna shoot to be the same cool chick at 28.
(I made a feeble attempt to search for my teacher’s quote, but instead found this gem from Gillian Anderson!)
“I mean the whole thing about meditation and yoga is about connecting to the higher part of yourself, and then seeing that every living thing is connected in some way.”