Rolling Out The Mat

Art by Shee Visual Design

Stuck, stagnant, controlling and dense
My brow is furrowed
And jaw is tense
My muscles have hardened with anxiety and fear
I’m not sure how to break out of this thunder I feel

How long has it been since I stepped on my mat?
I pushed it and pushed it and let everything else win
“I’m too tired” I said, “I’ll be fine without it”
Fine is how I feel, but it’s not thriving or vibrant or free, dammit

So I roll out my mat
And I bring to it all the rigidity, all stuckness, all of that

A down dog reveals the stagnation in form – where all those familiar emotions have been stored
I flow through as I listen, allowing my body to do its work
It’s innately intelligent and knows more than my brain
Which has been working long hours without many breaks

Long holds that allow gunky memories to bubble to the surface
Give way to flowing Vinyasa, as I breathe heat into my inner furnace
The memories flow and their emotions are freed
I didn’t realize how much I had tucked under the seams
Going from task to task and place to place
And mothering requires such self-regulation, all this stuff has been getting stuffed into some unknown place

And now I see where I’ve kept it all
In my psoas and temples and shoulders and toes
In the muscles and fascia and blood vessels and bones
These emotions and memories aren’t stored somewhere “out there”
They’re allocated to databases in my body that need to be aired
So I flow and breathe and moan and I seethe
And I let all these stuck parts of me effervesce to the surface to moan and to roar and to breathe

They clear through my breath and they feel light as air
Leaving a freshly cleared space where they once were, there

My spine is now free to articulate and roll
And my rib cage actually moves, spiraling in space, in any direction it asks to flow
And my calves are like putty – content, supple and long
And my hands are now twirling, in the air, before they prove themselves supportive and strong
And my neck is free and long again
And my toes spread out in any and all directions
And my inner thighs sigh as they stretch in prasarita
And my heart and mind no longer feel stuck either

The dark, roaring, humid thoughts
Have been exhaled out of the way
And now clear blue, vast open space is all that remains
The space thats always there, no matter my state

I imagine those heavy, tarry feelings that lifted from my heart
Are floating up to the sun like balloons drifting apart
What’s left is a clear, glowing space in my chest
Where there’s room for love to flow to myself, my son, my Beloved and the rest

It pours from me like a waterfall
Glowing pink liquid flowing to everything, everywhere

It’s here that I realize the space that I am
And that what is flowing through me IS what I am
I AM just this space, and I AM just this knowing
And everything else is an illusion that I can keep from growing

So I will practice and practice and let awareness grow
So that I can help others to know what I know
That as Hafiz says, I am the hole in the flute through which the divine plays it’s song
And being played feels like bliss
And I can be played, and I can also sing along

It doesn’t have to be hard and it doesn’t have to be tense
Life can be light and harmonious, and sometimes it has to be wild and intense
And perhaps if I keep breathing and moving and rolling out that mat
I’ll come to a place where I no longer need to clear out all of that

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