Sunday, March 28, 2010

Down Pour

I woke this morning feeling incredibly tender and tired. It was hard to get out of bed, hard to teach, hard to be functional. I tried to get past my sensitivity and focus but had a difficult time doing so. For a majority of the day I sat on the edge of my sadness hoping to keep myself from falling over. But, like tears that well up in the eyes, my sadness spilled over. And once the crying started and the sorrow came there was no stopping it. It was a torrential down pour today.
I feel so confused. Is the intensity of the immersion helping or hurting me at this time? I think in some ways it is helping me in that I am feeling my sadness so fully. Maybe it is speeding the grief process up. Can that be done? I don't know. Anyway, cleansing and purifying are the words that came to mind today when Darren asked the question, "what is this immersion doing to you and/or for you." I do feel a release like letting the torrent of tears fall in a pool around me has lightened my load. This is good. However, I also feel an intense need to nurture instead of push myself. At this point and time, I am so sensitive and feel everything so deeply that it makes me want to curl up into myself and just lie there for a while. So, I guess what I am getting as I write this is that pushing is not serving me. Clearly, less is more in this case.
I am to tired to try to write or process anymore. Instead, I will end with "Then Invitation" by Oriah Mountain Dreamer.
The Invitation~

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dream, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon. I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow, if you have been opened by life's betrayals or have become shriveled and closed from fear of further pain!I want to know if you can sit with pain, mine or your own, without moving to hide it or fade it, or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy, mine or your own, if you can dance with wildness and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes without cautioning us to be careful, to be realistic, to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself; if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul; if you can be faithlessand therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see beauty even when it's not pretty, every day,and if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, “Yes!”

It doesn't interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up, after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you, from the inside, when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in the empty moments.

Weepy,
Marcia

Friday, March 26, 2010

Day One~ Phase 2

This will be a short entry as I am tried and need to rest up for day 2 of phase II of the immersion. At the moment I am feeling pretty worked on all levels. Today was harder than I thought it would be but in a really good way. I knew that showing up would be the hardest part of this experience because there is this part of me that does not want to be seen at this time.
The opportunity to attend this immersion arose and I said, "Yes." And of course, I am grateful beyond words for the chance to be part of this experience. However, I find there is a part of me that feels undeserving of such love and acceptance and support. Why? I suppose I have a pretty independent streak and so accepting, much less, asking for help is a challenge of it's own making. And, yes, a mala is present and revealed. Damn it!
Really, I am in this place within myself where I don't know what to make of how I feel. My body feels strange and different. My head says lets move on but my heart feels otherwise. My heart feels both disappointed yet hopeful and so full of faith it blows me away. It's an odd concoction made of the fullness of life.
So, it seems, today's practice stirred things up, which is what I figured would happen and was a little afraid of. I had such an intense ride today. I went from feeling good to feeling really bad all in a matter of hours. I got really nauseous and dizzy at one point and was not expecting that. The feeling of being sick did not leave for the rest of the day and was hoping it would. Certainly, I was expecting to be pushed physically, mentally and emotionally but in a way I would recognize. Familiarity, it seems, is not a word that I relate to at this time.
I guess what I discovered today is that there is one part of me that wants to move past this whole experience of loss and not talk about the miscarriage anymore or feel the sadness anymore. I feel like that's enough already. My body and spirit are sending me other signals and signs which tell me that I have more to process. Funny how the practice and the pressure of the fire reveals it all. There is no denying what is up when you are in it. So... I am in it.
This was and is my intention, though. As I shared in the opening circle, my intention for this round in the ring with myself is to welcome and face full-on whatever comes. And today was harsh. I feel rocked and beaten and dizzy, but I am not out. I can rise to my feet to greet and welcome what is next. After all, tomorrow is a new day, and all I can do is try again and give myself praise and a lift. I am grateful to be with it and in it. I have never been so present with anything in my life. In some ways, I feel above it as if I am floating above myself to view it all. I can feel this shift is a big one. How this will manifest and morph into the most is a mystery. So, I wake, I participate and wait to see what comes.
Until tomorrow, sweet dreams and strength to all.
Worked,
Marcia

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Moving Forward~

I started making my way back into the world this weekend. I showed up early at the studio on Sunday morning to get a short practice in and to prepare myself and the space. I probably only practiced for 25 minutes but that was enough because it was the first bit of practice I'd done in over a week.
I woke feeling blue and vulnerable that morning, and as soon as I started moving my body I felt the emotions rise to the surface. I am always amazed at how moving the body through the poses stirs things up. In that sense, I find the practice so useful in helping me to understand and process my feelings. I figured that it was good to be feeling the sadness before students arrived so that I could get it out of my system and pull myself together to teach.
Before I new it, it was time to open the door and welcome the students in. The first thing many asked was how I was feeling and doing with regard to being pregnant. I responded in a vague way with a simple, "I am doing well" and then moved on. Some of the students were puzzled by my reply. However, that was easier for me. I just wanted to tell the whole group at once instead of one at a time. So I began class with the Rumi poem, "The Guest House", and then shared the news. I was doing pretty well up until that point. As soon as I had to say out loud that I had lost the baby, well, that is when I felt momentarily overwhelmed by the emotion. Sharing the news verbally made it all the more real and meant another level of acceptance. I was sure to point out that I am doing well. Even though this was an unexpected experience and outcome, I have great hope for what the future holds. I also shared that it is the practice that gives us the strength and courage to open ourselves to whatever life brings us. I really believe that it is about faith and trusting the process, trusting in the Absolute as John Friend would say. So after a few tears, I pulled it together, we sang the invocation, and got on with class. I think class went pretty well. It was not my most focused, clear-headed class but it was real.
I was truly moved by the compassion and empathy of the students. One student shared with me at the end of class that she knew this was a loss for me but that she felt it was a loss for them also because they felt this little baby was their something wonderful too. As soon as this student shared that sentiment with me, I burst into tears. Thankfully most of the students had left by that point.
I think what I realized is how intimate a regular class can be and is. A weekly class is like a family get together of sorts. We come together for an experience to share and show up as we are: good, bad, happy or sad. That's the beauty of the Kula, we embrace each other as we are, puffy eyes and all.
In honor of this little baby and for some sort of closure, Jason, Liam and I picked out and repotted a beautiful red hibiscus plant into an aqua-colored ceramic pot. My hope is that this plant will bloom and thrive and we will be reminded of the precious beauty and gift of life.
Moving forward with hopes high and the door of my heart open wide.
At Peace,
Marcia

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Welcoming the Guests~


I am feeling the sadness today as my body continues to cleanse itself. It seems that this baby is not to be at this time. I will give myself and body some time to heal and, in a couple months, we will try again for another baby. Things will happen as they happen when they happen.

I came across this painting titled "A Crowd of Sorrows" by Leah Piken Kolidas and this poem by Rumi, which seems the perfect form of expression I can relate to at this time. The line that stands out for me is: "He may be clearing you out for some new delight."



THE GUEST HOUSE

This being human is a guest house.
 Every morning 
a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness, some momentary 

awareness comes as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all! 
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows, 
who violently sweep your house empty of its furniture, 
still, treat each guest honorably. 
He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice. 
Meet them at the door laughing and invite them in.
Be grateful for whatever comes. 
Because each has been sent as a guide from beyond.

-- Jelaluddin Rumi, translation by Coleman Barks

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Uncertain...

(Artist: Kelly Rae Roberts)
I have a lot on my mind on this day. It is a day of celebration as this is my birthday. It's a slow, mellow morning. I am hanging out with my son Liam being lazy, sitting on the couch writing while he watches an episode of 'Curious George.'
This past week, though, has been full of uncertainty and questions with no real answers. Let me explain. I had my visit with the midwife last week and that went well. It was mostly time spent going over my chart and a conversation of questions. On Friday, I went to have an ultrasound to have a look at the baby and get an idea of the baby's growth and have some idea of age or a due date.
I was in week 10 of my pregnancy, this week marks 11. Unfortunately, the baby is only measuring nearly 6 weeks and there was no visible heartbeat. The baby's heartbeat does not become visible until week 6 or 7 and so this is not necessarily bad. Meaning, we could be wrong about the dates and the baby is right on target and we will see a heartbeat at the next ultrasound. Or,the other side of this is that the cells did not form properly and the baby stopped growing at this 5/6 week time period. What this means then is that nature will do what it does and my body will cleanse itself of the possible dead tissue on it's own. This, for me, means a 'miscarriage'.
At this point I oscillate between feeling a bit sad and worried to hopeful. Yes, I have been experiencing some symptoms such as cramping and light bleeding but nothing intense or heavy. So you see, I am left with questions. Am or am I not loosing this baby? Is everything just fine and my body is just telling me to take it easy?
All I can do is take it day by day, moment to moment and trust in the highest. If the symptoms get worse, I will have my answer. Either way, my ultrasound visit next week will hopefully help me get some clarity on this situation. I wish I could say that I had some clear intuition on this one, but I don't.
Truly, the outcome of my visit last week was unexpected and, to say the least, surprising or maybe the word is shocking. I had a good cry but am doing pretty well despite how all this may sound. I know that everything will be fine either way. If this pregnancy does come to an end, I, well, WE will try for a new beginning. Isn't it amazing how the uncertainty gives way to moments of clarity? I now know with certainty that I want another baby. This is good. It's not that I don't know that now but the knowing is deeper, more solid in a way.
I suppose what it comes down to is that this is not in my hands, and so I let go. All I can do is hold steady to my faith, trust the process, pay attention to the way I feel and respond accordingly.
The quote or phrase that comes to mind is... "The Universe is conspiring in your favor."
For now, I try to continue on as I normally would and steer my mind towards the good. I take a long look at my sweet boy and give thanks. I am lucky and blessed in more ways than one.
In Limbo but Bending,
Marcia

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Update

It's been nearly two weeks since my last entry. All is well. My body is changing little by little. No actual bump yet but some shape shifting going on in the middle. I busted out the maternity clothes and am glad I did. I can still fit my regular jeans but, after putting on a pair of maternity jeans, can feel the difference and appreciate the freedom a flexible band gives.
I am feeling pretty good and am really looking forward to my first visit with the midwife next Wednesday, March 10. It's amazing to me how slow time seems to go when I want to be at a certain place in the future. Working to enjoy each moment as it comes but can't help but anticipate this first visit. Not sure why it matters to get the 'official' word from the midwife since I feel the changes but it does.
In the meantime, I have been doing a lot of reading, required reading for my Anusara certification. It has taken me a while but am now ready and am enjoying this phase of the process and of learning. I have a friend who has decided to join me in the reading and we will share our thoughts over what we are reading. I think this will be immensely helpful to us both in understanding and integrating the material. On the side, I am also reading "Wheels of Light" and am loving this book. I just dug out a bunch of books that have been hiding in plastic bins in the garage since we moved here. It was like finding buried treasures. ;-)
Other than some growing, reading, teaching and living, not much else going on. Although, as I write that, it seems plenty is going on. So I guess that catches up for now. Life is good. Hope the same is true for the rest of you.
Peace,
Marcia