Choose Differently

In this connection with you, I could slice and dice and turn the prism of a moment of shame and self-criticism in my typical few directions before landing in softness. Yet, the heat, sharpness and intensity of summer reside not only outside but also inside the container of the body. These qualities of summer exacerbate the tendency I have to dissect, inspect and reorganize whatever discomfort I am in.

But I am full up with input and that pattern is not serving me in this moment.

Said directly: I’m sick of slicing and dicing right now.

When I am with a private client or a small group of students looking at the body, we don’t just consider the parts in isolation. We explore the parts in relation to the whole. Yesterday, one of my clients and I played with how some of her PT movements post knee surgery weren’t quite feeling “right.” In our explorations, we discovered she was bracing in her jaw and rib cage – which hampered her intention for strengthening the supporting musculature of the knee. After all, if the rib cage and jaw are locking and loading to do her exercises, why would her hip or inner line have to do much of anything? I love the moment when my clients – or myself in my own movement practice – see how much power they have to move toward their intention. And that power emerges when they quiet the current patterns and uncover previously untapped potential.

I wonder where I am going with this… Let’s walk on and find out.

If my pattern is to slice and dice my discomfort in order to come around to seeing myself as more whole, then what if I play with options outside of this pattern?

Option 1: I could slice and dice where I feel comfort / joy / wholeness to see myself as more broken. This is kind of the opposite of what I normally do. My left eyebrow lifted at that and left side of my mouth tightened up. It doesn’t exactly seem like it matches my intention right now.

What exactly is my intention here? Good question, Rachel. My intention is to lighten the full-up feeling. Okay, then with that in mind, let’s consider another option.>

Option 2: I could see any current full-up discomfort objectively and add no judgments based upon past experiences or future expectations. And so I say to myself objectively, “Right now, I feel full-up. And this week has many moving pieces and transactions in it.” Hard stop and breathe.

Breathe some more.

I feel space here. Immense space surrounding my head. The room actually feels like the walls have expanded outward by several feet. My eyes go beyond the computer screen to look out the kitchen window and up to the trembling leaves. I remember my 5 year old daughter’s softness back in the spring as nature came alive once more, “Mama, the leaves are dancing.”

Or the same daughter on a different day sitting on the front porch and abruptly looking up at the top of the trees as the branches swelled in powerful wind driven rushes against each other, “Mama, the trees sound like the ocean.”

Or my son freezing as the van door opened late one evening and the night greeted his spinning, buzzing, jack rabbiting 8 year old self. His eyes were intent as he looked into the space of nothing in the back of the garage but the radar of his ears opened behind him toward the driveway and the big big world, “Mama, it’s like the cicadas are shhhh’ing me.”

Ah. Option two has met my intention in a circuitously beautiful way. Less full up now. Less thickness. More curves to my inner belly, less sharp edges. Fuller breath and more complete exhale without any force.

Option two dropped me at the station of our shared super power, Presence. This moment.

Slicing and dicing, analyzing and examining, rotating and perplexing to see a new window into my 360 – they all fulfill a pattern of a desire I have to see and understand more. And sometimes that’s really good stuff for me. And sometimes it’s not good stuff for me.

Curiously enough, even without the slicing and dicing, I can come to the place that the slicing and dicing eventually delivers me. Presence. Here and now. These feet upon the floor. This softening brow. This set of shoulders softly rolling forward into Is.

If the slicing and dicing brings me closer to feeling when I can’t get there from my current state, I am ever so grateful. Because as I feel more, I feel MORE. More joy, more elation, more confusion, more sadness, ever more more more. And it is all beautiful because it is all this amazing Life.

Feeling more is just more hanging out.

It has been cloudy as I’ve written these words over the past 10 minutes but the sun just emerged in the left side of my picture window. New light. New shadows. New gradations between right and wrong, yes and no, black and white. A new moment to Be.

Take good care,

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