Friday, December 23, 2011

Dawn Patrol

This morning, I woke up at 5:15 and gathered myself together, took a tall gulp of coffee, and headed to a morning yoga class. It was a level 1-2, so it blended vinyasa flow with stronger poses like crescent and (my favorite) half moon, culminating in inversions and (another fave) handstand.  

As I lay in savasana just after 7 a.m., two things came to mind.  The first was a poem by Rumi:

The breeze at dawn has secrets to tell you.
Don't go back to sleep.

You must ask for what you really want. 
Don't go back to sleep.

People are going back and forth across the doorsill
where the two worlds touch.

The door is round and open.
Don't go back to sleep.

The second thought I had, laying there in the Tiffany blue of the room, bathed in the soft tapestry of skylight and candlelight, was I'm not an early morning yoga person.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Well, I Never... (But Yeah, I Probably Have)

photo by Teena Vallerine via Flickr via Pinterest
I went to a bridal shower recently and they played an icebreaker game that I'd played before called "I've Never..."  You're supposed to say something that you've never done and then all the people who have done said thing will put money or buttons in a jar for the honored guest.  It's a "getting to know you" sort of game.  I'm sure I've made people play it at showers I've hosted.

Anyway, this shower was for a very good friend of mine and I was with two other good friends and it was all very lovely and pink.  The room was filled with pale pink balloons, champagne and finger sandwiches for our tea.  Cookies.  Lip gloss.

The games hostess passed around a jar of buttons and asked each of us to take 10 buttons - any that we liked.  Since many of the ladies are crafters, I may have been expecting some sort of crafty fun and so I excitedly scooped up a handful of bright buttons.  And then the game began.

At first, it was benign.  "I've never had a child." Plunk. "I've never been to Paris." Plunk.  "I've never been drunk." 

"Excuse me," I asked, smirking, "do I need to put in a button per time I've been drunk?" Gales of laughter.  Plunk.

Here's the thing: I was shoving buttons into the jar at every turn, like I didn't even have an "I've never..."  I think the only thing that spared a button for me was "I've never been skydiving."

Then, as we ran out of things to "I never," someone said, "I've never smoked pot."  We all looked around the room sheepishly and I stood up and plunked my second to last button into the jar.  

I won't even tell you the one that I lost my last button to - but suffice it to say that I had a very well-rounded collegiate experience.  And I was the very first to lose all my buttons, by a bit of a long-shot.

"Yikes," I said to my bride-to-be friend, "you didn't know I was so skeezy, did you?"

"Aw, it's okay," she said.  "I'm sure I woulda been all skeezy with you."  Which made me feel a little better. 

When I got home, I told Raf about the game and how embarrassed I was that I hadn't lied to keep my buttons.  Secretly, I thought he'd regret having married me, a skeezy girl with a checkered past whose oats were obviously well-sown.

Instead, he shrugged in that way that he does and said, "Geez, I feel bad for all those people.  Who'd want to get to the end of their life and still have all their buttons?"

Happiness is a Freshly Made Bed

photo from via Pinterest
I once read a list of things that all "happy" people have in common - it might have been one of those annoying "Top 10 Things Happy People Do" or "How to Be Happy" articles in Cosmo or Better Homes and Gardens - and one of the items has stayed with me every day since.  It was so easy, it was comical. I think I even snorted in derision as I read it:

Make your bed.

"Make your bed," I imagine myself saying at the time.  I probably even put the magazine down and took a good gander at my bedroom, strewn with with children's toys and dirty clothes and likely a few spit-up stains on the comforter and pillow cases.  I might have even kicked the magazine aside and thought, "Right.  Like that will change my life."

But you know what?  I took a leap of faith - maybe not that day or the next or even the next week - and when I thought of that idea again, I simply pulled the top comforter up the the headboard and fluffed the pillows a little.  "Done," I said to myself.  Satisfied, I walked out of the room. 

And then I did it again, the next day.  Then the next. And so on.  Only, it made me start clearing a path from the bed to the closet, from the closet to the bathroom, to the staircase, down the stairs, through the living room, and into my life. 

I cleared shit out.  We moved.  I didn't take that old baggage with us.

And every day, I begin again, with a freshly made bed.