ever since my first memory as a little girl in Ethiopia, i have felt that i sometimes over-intellectualize things. for a period of time, i thought it was a bad thing until i got to know myself and my mind a little better. my mental process asks a lot of questions. it asks because it seeks clarity and the clarity is then transferred to doing things in a more concise and harmonious way. this cerebral process works only some of the time.
the process of letting go has been a challenge for me since time immemorial. whether it's the trauma of being resettled as an Ethiopian refugee to Portland, Maine, or the bitterness caused by an abusive step-father, i stand stubborn, arms crossed, until finally, i release.
there has not been one aspect of my life that has been handed to me. i left my parents home in 2003, financed my college education, landed my first job, paid for my own rent, etc. and all the while, i would dig deep within the cave of my soul and excavate all that i have accumulated along my journey. each time i have chosen to let-go rather than cling-to, the universe has rewarded me. it is just now, as i am inching toward thirty that i appreciate how far i have actually come.
today, Jen Rene attempted to help me get into supta kurmasana, sleeping turtle. i am not yet able to come into the fullest expression of the pose, so for now, we use a block to support my feet. eventually, my feet will come behind my head, and my arms will bind behind my back! it was then that all of these revelations came. Jen said, "Nya, hold this for twenty breaths, at least!"
i sat there, in turtle pose, with my head down and my feet propped, internally weeping. every time i would tense my thighs, tears threatened to come pouring out of my eyes, but when i let go and released my thighs and hips, i surrendered. and then i thought, this is letting go. maybe it was only for five of the twenty breaths, but this is the practice. this is the samadhi that keeps me coming back to the Mysore room. maybe, if i keep coming back and accumulate these lessons over time, i can continue healing, "and when i get to where i'm going, they'll be only happy tears. i will shed the sins and struggles i have carried all these years and i'll leave my heart wide-open. i will love and have no fear, when i get where i'm going."
letting go is a process. give time, time and let go of what you can, when you can.
physical release ----> emotional release ----> mental release ----> healing.
photo credit: james jackson