Isn’t it interesting how we all like to “take the edge off”. A martini after the office, a beer after digging in the yard, a game of tennis, an energy drink to blast through your part time job after your full time job, a nap, maybe some bad-ass sex in the evening after a long day, a hike, a smoke, a good conversation with some intelligent friends after a meeting, a drive in the country, maybe it is a big bowl of Green Chile Stew and a couple hot homemade flour tortillas, a margarita, lifting some weights at the gym, taking a run. These all sound fantastic don’t they?.
But to some people, they prefer pain, gossip, anguish, arduous arguments dragging the issue into the ground, baggage overload, emotional vampirism, cutting themselves, delving into a pit of depression, dragging their knuckles on the ground scrapping their skin into the pavement. Sounds bleak and dark.
So what if you are depressed, So what if you smoke, so what if you drink, so what if you are a cutter!
On a Yoga mat. Nothing matters except you! You. You and your problems, your blessings, your problems that you don’t think are problems. You and your skin. You and your breathe no matter what you do to take the edge off, your sugar, your fat, your dreams and nightmares, your stiff legs, your healthy sexual desires, your painful feet, your complaints…….they all stay on the mat with you. You cannot give them to anyone else. Your past experiences that are haunting you that you cannot get rid of, and are trying to spill them out on to others, your damage control, your dark hallways. Sounds terrible doesn’t.
Guess what?…..we are men and ladies being molded by the white light, we are heroes of wars, personal wars that go on, deep inside, we are not all pretty, we are not all young and tight, we are older, wiser, weaker and filled with letting go. We thrive for the mat. The Yoga mat that doesn’t care. It may have the prettiest flowers and the most majestic haiku, but it doesn’t care. It is your sacred space, to create a healthy boundary, not only for yourself, but for others. Each with our mat, to support our Asanas of pain and joy.
We drag our Yoga mats to vacation, to Yoga class, to the forest, to the Yurt, to the patio, to the living room and to studio and to beyond. We take “the edge off”, standing, sitting and laying down. As BKS Iyengar would say, “knowing the violence inside of you”. The fears. My fear is inversions. I have a violence inside of me that I wrestle with, with inversions.
FEAR False Evidence Appearing Real.
When you get into Yoga. F&*ck everybody else. Focus on your own damage, fear, pain, joy, love, and all the other stuff floating, wading, mucking, blooming, blossoming and charging in your amazing life.
I do not want to hear, “I can’t go to a Yoga class, I am too depressed, angry or blaming my problems on my childhood” seriously, really? Go to your mat, even if you are in an insane asylum, a mental hospital, a VA hospital, a ghetto, a barrio, a dead end, a farm, you live in your car, a recovery house, a mansion, a trailer or a brick house. Just stand on the mat, just sit on the mat. Cry on the mat, lay down in a fetal position on the mat. Stuff will start coming out of your pores. You will begin to move, breathe and say to yourself, my movement inside of me is my life. I work things out with my inner voice that is focused on a healthy outcome. No blame. Tag – you are it! You will grow. It will be hard, you will not like some things and some things you will.
So, now that I have been through my own personal “Vietnams”, my wars-not yours, my growth and pain, love and lost, bad decisions, great choices, laughter and loathing, gaining momentum and falling behind, watching things unfold that I am not happy with and giving them away to nothing, celebrating my life with a joy that comes from the painful road, the beautiful road, the red road, the yellow brick road. I have my Asanas that I am approaching with mixed feelings. Pushing through to the other side, fear, WTF attitude and yet my inner stuff is my inner stuff, on my time-not your time, and we should all let one another approach that mat and Asanas on their own engine. Be patient with yourself.
Some people look so beautiful on the outside and their insides are screaming for escape and help. Some people look scary and dark-inward and yet they are free on the inside.
Go now, be your happy amazing self on that filthy mat or that darling sparkly mat. Dance inside, whether you dance to Trance Techno or Hip Hop, Country or Blue Grass, Gospel or Death Metal, just be honest with yourself, not with others while you are on the mat, because YOU are it! Work it, Love it, Be it on your time.
So, Take the Edge Off, give the lust of Yoga and all it has to offer to yourself. Your imperfect Awesome self. Be a selfish bitch on the mat. Get quiet, get inside, get deeper. Get to know YOU! Take the edge off! Float away for that amount of time and let that build you, shape you and draw you, closer to yourself.