It's Supposed To Be Hard
Ben and I like to hike on the weekends. There are several trails close to our home. There are a lot of ups and downs on the trails. Inevitably, we will hit a steep incline and boy do I bitch about it. My glutes start to burn, I have to work to catch my breath, and all I want is for the easy, flat part to start. Sounds a lot like sitting in chair pose for a long time, doesn’t it? I want to “hike”, yet I complain when it gets difficult. Why don’t I just take a walk? Because I want the challenge the hike provides me. I was reminded just this morning that the steep inclines often lead to the best views. With work comes reward. And sometimes it just means a turn on the trail, only to find myself staring at another steep incline. When it’s all done and I am back at the car, there is a sense of satisfaction and peace.
Let’s go back to that chair pose I referenced earlier. Have you ever been in chair pose in class, and the teacher, okay probably me, held you there a LOT longer than you wanted to be? I’ve been in those classes myself, trust me. In my head, I’ve yelled at the teacher. My thoughts are things like ‘why on earth is she holding us here forEVER?”, “is there a point to this?”, and “why does this have to be so hard?”. Holding a twisted chair is even more dramatic in my head. I’m so happy when I get to forward fold. All that work and then OMG now I need to do crow? I went to a POWER yoga class, and when my teacher is bringing the heat, building the fire, I fight it. Like going on a hike and bitching every time I go Up. Kind of like moving because I want a challenge and fighting it every step…
I have been in New Mexico for a few months now. There have been many days I have ended up in tears, and I ask Ben the aforementioned “why does it have to be so hard?” Now, a bit of perspective on what “hard” can mean. One day it might mean that it is too hot and the flies are driving me crazy. Another day it might mean that the engine light came on in my car. Just yesterday it meant that one of the dirt roads I take to get in to Santa Fe was being worked on, and I couldn’t get to yoga. Hard can also mean trying to find a community that resonates with me, and a space willing to give me an opportunity to teach. I moved to New Mexico for the challenge, for the adventure, and yet I complain constantly about how hard it is. I asked for this to be hard, yet I desire it to be easy? Instead of finding ease with what is, I make it even harder. I find that I stop breathing, clench my jaw, and at times even stomp my feet. Yep. My inner 5 year old shows up. I remind her often to breathe, find ease, and to trust the process.
This Baptiste practice is designed to build the heat and fire. It provides poses that mimic the sensation that I felt yesterday when I couldn’t use our road to get to yoga, or climbing a steep incline on a hike; I’m challenged, often breathless, sometimes angry and frustrated. I do this practice on my mat to help me navigate the time off my mat. Find breath, find ease. It’s supposed to be hard. All of it. Just beyond the “why does this have to be so hard” is the “Oh my gosh, I did it!”
Last week I visited a clothing boutique and pitched a yoga class in her space.I’m headed there next Sunday to teach a class to all of her employees.I will see where it goes from there.I’m taking the “it is supposed to be hard”, finding ease, and looking forward to the Oh my gosh, I did it.Because it is going to happen. I am ready now.