out in the desert for a wind bath

beginning of august… not exactly the time to visit my parents outside of las vegas nevada, but what with the climate change that is upon us, and portland temps heading that week past 100 degrees, not to mention wild fires burning from BC south… it all seemed the same somehow.  not that flying there with my son doesn’t add to the collective problem.  we all wonder how close we can hover to the tipping point and for how long. (not very!)

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and time with family has it’s own weight and limit.  i find though, as i grow, i am learning.  i’m learning to let go and breathe and allow the irreconcilable conversations to be left alone before they can start… the discussions about politics, the patterns and habits of dysfunction, the food choices, the lifestyle differences… just let it all be.  my son begs for time with his grandparents and this is important.

last summer post election, in strained phone conversations with my mother, i nearly threw in the towel.  when i heard those words parroted back to me “that was just locker room talk” i couldn’t do it anymore.  how as a woman, as a mother could i reconcile with that?  with the disgusting pig of a man that had now been glorified to the highest office of the land being justified in fox news speak by my own personal first lady, my mom?

i was close to deciding to have nothing to do with my parents.  and as a mother, that is difficult to consider.  to think that at some point, my son (who is 11) and i could see things so differently that he would not talk to me anymore.  painful.  but how?

so this would be our first visit post election.  at some point, (and NO, not because i think any of the current situation is NORMAL) but at some point, i softened and my son’s questions about when he was going to see he grandparents echoing in my mind, i made plans for a visit.

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on one of the first nights, sitting there with everyone in front of a movie on the big screen TV, i looked up to see the wind whipping through the trees outside against a brilliant blue-black sky.  i got up and took a walk out in the back yard.  

the temperature was perfectly delicious.  the wind, possessed of the spirit of the desert herself smacking and caressing me from all directions at once, the trees wildly rustling and bending.  i was taken by the shear force and strength of the elelment in it’s essence.  

it was mid-movie and i was expected to go back inside but i couldn’t pull myself away from the beauty and awe i was experiencing.  this was the desert.  this raw crazy un-tamed energy.  this, the reality of the night, here and now in this place.  and as i was beaten about, sitting on the diving board of the pool, my hair whipping this way and that.  i recieved the winds message to me,  let go… let go… let go…

when things feel stuck there is a practice of considering not this or that, but the third unknown way.  not a mid-point but instead an entirely new paradigm (or two or three!) just outside our view that we don’t even realize is waiting to be uncovered.  openings to a new way.  possiblities.  choices.  once found, we realize they were there all along.

any attempt to decide anything - opinions about ourselves or the world around us are simply crystallizations waiting to be blown apart by the winds of change and by the reality of impermanence.  so how to find the shared humanity in the midst of all of this.  the way to continue to grow and continue to let go?  how to find that third or other path, where we all come together as beings in need of the same things, love, shelter, food, drink, companionship?

yoga practice reminds us that the present moment is all that we have.  and as we try to grasp it, so too it slips away.  coming into close relationship with the breath, we can attempt to release from our busy lives and busy minds and sometimes when we are moving or chanting we can simply be in that breath, in that mantra, in that moment.  

this is the opportunity the wind allowed me on this night in the desert.  it snatched me out of my judgements and by being so much more powerful than my doubting mind, by overpowering me with it’s beauty and vitality, it brought me strongly into that moment.  softening any edges i might have been trying to cover up.  rocking me to my core.

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breathe of gaia.  take this pain and these presuppositions.  set me free.  i sat and sang the hanuman chalisa though my voice was barely audible over the roar of the wind.  musing to myself at one point ‘anjali mudra pavanasuta nama…’ the son of the wind god is moving through me!  oh my.  and i could feel my heart opening.  

we all have to find our own way through challenging relationships and situations.  it is never easy.  i was reminded that night that the earth mother is here to feed and guide us all.  somehow, by taking that hand, by being taken by her power i was able to not feel so alone.  i was able to allow.  if we let go and allow our feelings to move through us, we can express…and in expressing we can remember it is okay to FEEL.  times are crazy right now.  let us all breathe deep and feel the earth beneath our feet!

the week with family passed uneventfully.  no dramas, no overly uncomfortable conversations or arguments.  i was able to feel into the humanity of these souls who took it upon themselves to raise me.  and though i disagree vehemently with what i see as continued brain-washing going on (fox news playing day and night…) i let go.  

it is my hope that we each find our way.  we need one another.

"In every moment of sadness, another layer of outdated cellular memories leaves your energy field. As each layer is released through spontaneous expressions of doubt, despair, and disappointment, the world is equally cleansed and released from the spell of unconsciousness.” matt kahn