Don't Push, Allow
Two days ago I couldn't sleep. Not too surprising for a woman who is in her ninth month of pregnancy. But I knew this was not the baby as much as my state of mind. A day earlier had been one of those days where nothing went right. I had an agenda and the world was apparently not on my side—the computer was being slow, my puppy frisky, my body complaining, my mind racing, and my spirit...well...not altogether present.
So, at 3:00am, I got up, found a blanket, sat on my couch, and meditated. The message I received was "Don't push. Allow." Rather immediately, I knew I was hearing truth. My body relaxed. I felt a burden lifted. I was free...humbled. My ego, with its idea of the way things should go, had gotten ahead of me again. As I released this, my breath became easy and a feeling of gratitude washed over me.
Later in the morning, while walking my puppy through the woods, I noticed a majestic beauty that had escaped me the day earlier. Honoring my duty as a new puppy owner, I was available for my puppy's needs and he responded with a day of ease and grace. I felt like a happy mama. And I got a lot more done on this day of surrendering the need to get it all done. My so-called physical "symptoms of pregnancy" disappeared. I was energized and peaceful. That night, I slept like a dog.
Last month, while reviewing Yoga's niyamas or observances in Yoga class, I was interested to learn from the majority of students that the niyama they most struggle with, and need to cultivate, is ishvara pranidhana (to surrender). They laughed at themselves as they agreed with one another. It's nice to laugh at ourselves on our Yoga journey—we are laughing at that part of ourselves we know is not really who we are. And once we do this, we can let it go and merge once again with the flow of that which is beyond our understanding. And much more fun, really.
We are reminded, again and again, that this is a practice. We recommit to our Yoga living every day. The same is true of our meditation—it doesn't necessarily get easier and we are reminded again that the purpose of life is not to find happiness, or ease, but wisdom.
In peace, Julie Rost