I’ve been absent from blogging for a couple of weeks. Sometimes Life just needs to act itself out. And then suddenly everything jumps back in its own box and things are a bit controlled again. Sort of.
I’ve been seeing a new man. A physical therapist. After over a year of undiagnosed difficulties in my hip and groin and trying a myriad of things from personal trainer to chiropractor and masseuse, the problem gradually worsened. Had I listened to the small voice in my head which said ‘go to the physical therapist’, I would have saved myself some money and some angst. But sometimes we just can’t get out of our own way. I’m not sure if I was afraid of what the problem might be, or if I knew it involved work to fix it and I really didn’t want more work in my life. Whatever.
I read all the time. I always have a book on the go. In recent years I have posted the list of books I’ve read throughout the year. This year I thought I would do it differently. I thought I would write a post only about the books I really loved. The list is short. *Spoiler alert* I’m about to reveal one of the three books now, so the list just got shorter for that future post.
The book is one of those rare finds I wish I could discover all over again. It is like reading a very long letter from your best friend–that is, if your best friend is brutally honest and a very good writer. The book reveals a difficult past and how the author set about changing the results of that past. It is so honest and confronting and insightful and beautifully written, it is almost hard to believe.
The book is called Love Warrior by Glennon Doyle-Melton.
I don’t want to spoil the experience for you, should you decide to read her memoir. But I want to make you aware, in case you want a good book for the eventual downtime you might have after Christmas is over.
After a life filled with running away from her pain and hiding in sex, booze and dysfunction, Glennon had one of a number of crises that started to heal her. She writes about the pain of sitting in a ‘hot yoga’ class, because she didn’t know where else to go. The instructor asked around the room ‘what were the intentions of each participant?’ When it was her turn, aware that she had made a terrible mistake coming to hot yoga when her hot emotions were at a peak, she squeezed out the words ‘my intention is just to stay on this mat and make it through whatever is about to happen without running out of here’. She didn’t want to run away from the pain any more. Those words stuck with me. Several times this week I have been challenged by things I did not want to deal with. Glennon’s words hovered in my ear, and were transformed by my brain into shorthand that I understood–‘stay on the mat’.
Sometimes, staying with things is hard. But the pain in our lives is there to teach us. To run away means you miss that lesson. This week the Universe has quietly bestowed upon me lessons I have been running from for some time. They were not nearly as painful once I decided to ‘stay on the mat’ and feel what they had to show me. The malfunction of my hip is enormously improved. I learned that expertise and efficiency are no match for humanity and energy. I was reminded that the Universe is, in equal portions, brutal and compassionate. And I learned that staying on the mat doesn’t mean nothing is happening.
Light Chaser, out.