I woke up this morning feeling a little bit blue. Nothing major, just this kind of blues that sometimes shows its face for no apparent reason. The one that becomes a more regular visitor as you mature and age. I don’t think it has anything to do with getting older per se, but as the years go by and your twenties become your forties the clay, which with you have shaped your circumstance, is beginning to set, to harden. Earlier in life, whenever the stitch of discomfort started nagging at my supposed happiness, it was easy to reinvent and renovate, but with the years passing, as relationships and responsibilities solidify, the more drastic or spontaneous options available to those who still have a spring in their step and whose luggage is light are no longer mine. So it’s not as easy to disperse the “for no reason blues anymore. I suppose Facebook and the online universe sometimes does the trick, but they are but short-lived fantasies that in no way contribute to the overall general state of affairs, now I have to work it out, see it through and try to endure the pull of my own melancholy without falling too deep in it’s swamp like ground which on a day like today could easily spiral down towards self pity and possible despair. That’s no easy feat when you’re a bit of a drama queen.
I have an almost automatical response of attaching a bunch of different reasons to this blue feeling when it comes. It’s the response of the escape artist, the one that dictates that all your worries and strides could be erased if only… I know, a load of crap and a handful of delusion, I know. But that knowledge, coming from years of experience, 43 to be exact, of living in this mind, in some ways almost makes things worse in the moment. It makes me feel besides just blue also stupid. Besides being of the tender age of 43, with all the wisdom of hindsight that living more years entails, I’m also a yogi, and that’s the main reason why the blame strategy doesn’t do the trick anymore. I can now hear the falsity hiding in the rhetoric of my mind, I, by now know and recognize the blues for what it is, a cloud passing by, filtering the sun, but the thoughts reasons and culprits are still the bulk that makes up my thought stream in those moments. And I have to admit, it’s much easier to when you feel like crap, assign blame and feel like a victim of your circumstance…It’s all his fault…if it wasn’t for them…that idiot Donald Trump…those stupid terrorists/racists…because when I was a child… Or, If I only was/had/hadn’t…if only the weather wasn’t so…if I was thinner…because if I could only be king of the world… You know Yoga burst that bubble and the simple solution of complaint is no longer quite as effective. Illusion and delusion are no longer able to fully cast their seductive spells and this leaves me more naked and vulnerable to my own shifting emotions and sensations.
But yoga is also the reason I didn’t go back to bed and pull the cover over my head this morning. It’s what in these moments gives me strength to despite wanting to totally bail out, to instead engage in the life I have chosen. It works a bit like the blue pill of The Matrix. It’s not the easy, light choice, it forces you to see a more panoramic view of the phenomenal world and doesn’t censor any of it’s thorny, hurtful edges, but yoga simultaneously teaches you to stay at the edge without needing to take another pill to soothe your anxiety. It makes you understand that you have that inherent ability to learn there and also offers the tools to curve the edges, so they hurt less. Yoga propels you to grow but also hands you an always-available generous toolbox to help you cope gracefully with the growing pains that inevitably come with the package. I’m a yogi in the midst of life, a life full of responsibilities, people and commitments and have understood that in the constant movement between feeling good/great/awesome and bad/crap/shit the more pertinent clay available for shaping life can be found. A clay that is molded with awareness and equanimity, acceptance and intelligent action. A clay that doesn’t harden, but is constantly subject to the truth of impermanence. So instead of giving in to the temptation of complaining about what is and trying to change what is out there, I am learning to observe and mold my experience from the inside. Using in-sight. Kind of like, instead of resisting and trying to silence the blues, learning to sing it.
About the Author
Jenny is a Yoga Teacher at The Jewel of Yoga. She entered into Hatha Yoga through Ashtanga Vinyasa, loved the feeling of committing to practice and that of giving movement to the meditative process. Over the years she has slowed down and so has her practice, moving in softer styles, such as Yin or slow flow asana.
She is most interested in finding her voice, which practice suits me today? Practicing like this, asana becomes a vehicle for not only awareness but also joy and creativity. Her first meeting with meditation was through Vipassana and it is still a relevant part of her awareness training but she is also open to any self-revelatory practice that offers a direct link to the heart.
Join Jenny for one of her upcoming retreats in Portugal: Yin Yoga Retreats, Classic Yoga Retreat, Yoga and Massage Retreat, Yoga and Healthy Food Retreat, Yoga Surf Holiday.