Black & Blue

True perfection seems imperfect.

yet it is perfectly itself.

True fullness seems empty,

yet it is fully present.

True straightness seems crooked.

True wisdom seems foolish.

True art seems artless.

The Master allows things to happen.

She shapes events as they come.

She steps out of the way

and lets Tao speak for herself.

-Tao Te Ching, 45

I didn’t know what to write about this week. I was contemplating all of these topics. I was totally stuck…grrr to writer’s block. Then, I went to0 fast skiing down the mountain, taking off from my partner, crashing into the side of the mountain, and being flexible in this instance did not help. Somehow, my ski released from the binding (thank god), and my knee met my eye- not with grace. Let’s just say that I have a black and blue eye, and it looks like I’ve been punched in the face. It’s actually a perfect shade of purple and red. Think 80’s eye makeup gone south. It’s totally humiliating to walk around like this, seriously. Everyone thinks the worst, and they just stare at you like you got sucker punched. The reality is I am re-learning how to ski, and am so grateful I had a patient teacher.  I love skiing, and I especially love being a beginner at something again. You can learn with a clean slate, a fresh mind, a beginner’s mind where everything has potential and is brand new. It makes life sweet!

In falling down from going too fast and not taking my time, the ultimate lesson arrived. It was like someone shouting at me…hello…Beth…slow the hell down or you are going to crash. Crash I did and am. I haven’t been relaxing and taking my time to pause. Lately, I will sit instead of practice asana, go for restorative asanas, or spend time in nature to ground. Today after seeing my acupuncturist, she basically told me that my qi is so low that I need to rest. The truth is the one thing that I have been passionate about my whole life, teaching and okay saving the world, is now draining me and making me sick. I work with kids who live in violence and poverty. I love them, even when they tell me to F*** off; however, absorbing that energy all day will drain you. It’s draining me, and it is hard to admit. Here is why. One I take on their energy. When you are sensitive to the energy of others around you, it happens. I don’t like giving up and surrendering. Also, my story has been that I am always the one to be strong, to be the foundation, to keep it together, the one that is the support to her friends, the one you call when you need an ear or someone to help you out, her mother’s life-long therapist, the one that feels responsible, and the teacher that has to keep it together for each of her students. It is difficult for me to say, “I’m not okay and am completely stressed out.” And, I know that I am not alone in this. For all of us whom have a challenging time admitting that we have fallen and are not okay, say it to someone. It will weaken the “Everything is Fine! Everything is Okay!” story line, but more importantly allow for healing and change to occur. Time to slow down…just a bit.

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