When yoga is needed
In case you are wondering, it is 4:07 am. I can hear the dawn chorus beginning, although it is still dark outside. I fell asleep at 8pm while breastfeeding, woke up at midnight and haven't been able to get back to sleep.
This moment is specifically inspired by breastfeeding, but is not limited to it. These days, I am experiencing a powerful aversion to feeding my babies. I am experiencing a powerful aversion to my own body. It doesn't feel like it is mine at the moment. It is uncomfortable, inside. It is difficult for me to look at on the outside. It is not an easy place to be. It is not entirely unfamiliar either. At the moment, I know that I am riding a wave of hormones and changes. I have been breastfeeding for 2 years straight. But these feelings go back further. They remind me of other times in my life my adolescence and early 20's. Earlier times too. Times when the body didn't feel good inside, didn't feel right outside.
I've dealt with these feelings in many ways over the years. I had perfected numbing techniques, through both "positive" and "negative" strategies - overwork, constant business, hours of training, or drugs, food, people and technology addiction. At the moment, I know in myself that none of these are good options. The numbness and distraction that they can provide will not heal the underlying discomfort. More likely, they will make it worse.
Tonight, it is now 4:17 am, I am going to choose another way. I am going to stop writing, stop looking at screens and phones. Stop reading. i will lay down. And I will breathe. In the morning, when one of them wants to be fed, I will find a comfortable place for my body. And I will breathe. Tomorrow, I will carve out moments throughout the day to be mindful, to be present, even to the discomfort. I will find moments to move my body with pleasure, for pleasure. I will find ways to feed my soul and body with awareness and love, not numbness. I will find away to move through this moment of aversion, not around it.
This is yoga. And this is when yoga is real.