Yin yoga gives us the time to relate to our bodies. To take 5-15 minutes in each pose if we so feel led and to allow the constrictions of the muscles and joints to tell us our own story. What we realize as we give over to the experience of the pose is that the constrictions that visit us through not being able to touch our toes are not so much about our physical body, but have much more to do with the frame of mind we currently operate from.
As I become present with the sensations that occur when doing deep mindful stretching my emotions begin to float up from the depths of the areas of the body that they have been stored in by that magnificent magical librarian of our emotions called... our limbic system. This is the time that the deep grumpy conversation with my hamstrings starts.
"You can stop now" "This hurts" "Seriously you can stop now... you will break me if you keep stretching me." "Fine you just hate me don't you?" "I can't do this" on and on this conversation goes. I don't hide from it, and I do not seek to silence the voice that lives within my hamstrings. I invite the inner dialogue so that I can understand my body and it's needs and fears even more. I have not listened to myself for many years, just like many people... pushing through life unwilling to take a moment to listen to my inner needs, wants, or desires.
This has hardened my body, joints, and my mind in different ways. For the past 5 years I have been undoing this type of behavior through hypnosis largely, yet I find that sometimes I still fall back on my old habits. For many of us that have endured the abuses of life, we can function primarily on what we can do for others, how many toys we can get, and definitely what and who does or does not make us feel safe and secure.
To encourage my body to face it's restrictions and to allow the emotions of fear, pain, anger, and rage a space to speak to me, I am giving a voice to my healing. I am not judging that these emotions exist and I am not trying to change them at all. I am not denying their existence in lieu of something better or a distraction that can make me feel better by pretending that they are not there, on the mat, in my yoga practice, or even in other aspects of my life... ALL other aspects I am certainly sure.
As I stretch and breathe and validate the feelings of the voices that are releasing themselves from deep within my muscle tissue I choose in each second not to give up, not to run away from my own precious Spirit, not to deny myself the freedom of health. Perhaps this courage comes from being a survivor of molestation, rape, spiritual abuse, and familial abuse. Or perhaps this is the courage of my own Spirit that planned this life to teach me that I can grow and learn and love no matter what experiences come to me.
On my mat I practice courage and faith... in each second. I face myself, my fear, my beliefs and the beliefs of my tribe. I stretch my body so that I can stretch my mind. I stretch my body so that my body, my mind, my emotions, and most importantly so that my Spirit knows beyond a shadow of a doubt... that I love myself enough to be real and to take care of the little boo boos and the larger hurts. Bent into the dragonfly position I face my life in it's entirety... the good the bad... every single thing. Reiki flows and I take my time, because I choose me...
There is no more important moment. There is no more important date or task than to just be in communion with that which honestly runs my life. It gives me to opportunity to listen in consciously to how my sub-conscious mind is seeing the world and me. It gives me the opportunity to right old wrongs whether inflicted by myself or another...
I can not change what has happened in my life, but I can certainly choose how to view and feel regarding each hurt or pain that my body uses to attempt to shut me down and send me into hiding. I no longer choose to hide... and the Reiki flows and the healing happens and I breathe... and only do I relent when the voice has quieted to a sweet understanding that there really is nothing to fear. Then it is time to move into a different pose and face what it brings up for me.
After that wonderful time in my yoga practice, I practiced qi gong and then conscious annointing with very specific essential oils so that I could assist myself in releasing deeply and healing completely. And in the end of this time there is nothing but peace and bliss to greet me as my eyes open and I face today...
I am incredibly blessed!