Patience is not waiting passively until someone else does something. Patience asks us to live the moment to the fullest, to be completely present to the moment, to taste the here and now, to be where we are. When we are impatient, we try to get away from where we are. We behave as if the real thing will happen tomorrow, later, and somewhere else. Let’s be patient and trust that the treasure we look for is hidden in the ground on which we stand. – Henri Nouwen –
Lately, I have been focusing on the transitions in my yoga practice. Transitions like going from Down Dog to bringing one leg forward into a low lunge, or jumping from Down Dog into Forward Fold. A flowing yoga class is full of transitions from one pose to another. Normally I just focus on the actual pose. My mind is set on finding the right alignment, feeling strong, steady, and light. But about a month ago I went to a new class and the instructor had us slow the transitions way down and hold them. The transitions then became the pose. And transitions are brutal! I was painfully aware of how carelessly I move between the poses, because all I am thinking about is getting there (wherever there is).
And so with life, of course. I would like to say that I don’t count my chickens before they hatch. The truth is, I historically count my chickens before I even have a hen to lay the eggs.
When Rob was offered a job (in Champaign) in mid-November (2011) we were thrilled! His future boss told him they would like him to start in 2 weeks. So we said our sudden and very tearful goodbyes and very quickly started to pack the house so that we could leave the weekend of Thanksgiving. Our tiny house was full, floor to ceiling, with boxes. We had left only the essentials of the kitchen and bathroom, to be moved in the end-end.
We did not move the weekend of Thanksgiving. Or Christmas. Or New Years. We finally moved the weekend of Martin Luther King Day! The negotiations for the job took much longer than we expected (wanted). So, for 2 months we were in transition, waiting on the edge of our seat to move. It is quite exhausting to be on the edge of your seat for that long, let me tell you.
We have been in Champaign-Urbana in a teeny little apartment with only the very, very bare essentials since mid-January. On July 31st we will (Lord willing and the creek don’t rise) close on Our House. It has of course taken quite a bit longer to go through than a normal sale, because God apparently is wanting me to focus on transitions too…holding them a super long time.
On a yoga mat, the transitions are so difficult because you aren’t physically stable – one leg is moving in the air, or you’re shifting your weight, changing the direction of your gaze. All of that requires your full attention, easing up your body, while still engaging all your muscles! I have decided to practice the transitions as if they are the very challenging pose I am trying to be in…because they just are.
And off the mat? I’m figuring it out. It is in my nature to start making lists, schedules, and prioritizing in order to accomplish everything we need to do. I’m sure there will be some of that. But, I’m going to try and just make a list of the day and keep my horizon line close.