I was never comfortable in my body. i liked it well enough, but it weirdly wasn’t natural to me. As my prefrontal cortex took over, the awkwardness grew and I came to believe I really was my mind, being carted around in this body who wasn’t very good at it. Not terribly bad, but just a bit off.
Last year I was re-learning how to walk. Tai chi had me coming to understand that I had some essential flaws in my movement which would obviously be contributing to my overall disfunction/autoimmune. When I would slow way down and pay attention to the distribution of weight, i had no limp. when i sped up, i may as well have a peg leg. But there was still a problem, and it went deeper than learning to walk. i had to re-learn how to stand.
Now, I am 50 years old. 49 when this came up, but that is a lot of years to be essentially tweaky in the way one holds one’s body in space. About 6 months ago, I could see my “dead spider” tai chi in my legs and finally switch to unbreakable leg. Big difference. Huge difference. But it still wasn’t all of it.
I’m not sure this is all of it, but i’ve just learned an essential tilt in my hip that has been messing with my breathing MY WHOLE LIFE. I can’t tell you how many pranayama classes, protocols, exercises…. All of them close… none of them transformational (well, maybe all of them transformational in some ways, but not in the freedom of the breath). This tilt I can finally understand finally solves the breathing problems -so my guess is as I practice this more balanced standing, i will be relearning breath, too. and as i learn from my breath, i can re-learn all of the activities of my life, but now each of them stemming from the depth of my connection – instead of in search of it.
Practicing this new standing has made a whole bunch click into place, the foremost being the breath, but equally important my ability to feel the energy coming up through my legs and stabilize it for a really relaxed upper body. this has never been available to me. I can still only do it for a few minutes at a time, but because I have somatic experience of the alignment, I feel like I just got vowels. Like i’ve been living in a sea of consonants. I had a “y” so I could make some words, but geez. Suddenly 5 quick additions (or even 1 addition would be a big deal) and the world opens up. Now I know why i’ve been carrying all of these letters around. Oh, how I wish I had been exposed to tai chi (gene’s version) ages ago.
Moose is one of my animal totems. Awkward elegance. People laugh, because lovely as I may be, I fall down a lot in winter and other, less explainable not-quite-at-home-physically. I really did figure that it was (and i am ashamed to even say this) “because I am so spiritual” but my body calling foul and demanding my attention really has been such an enormous gift I can’t even begin to fathom how crazy I would have driven myself had I continued what I now call “the chase.” This body is way the fuck smarter than I am. This prefrontal cortex started telling stories and may well have just spiraled into space. It had all my attention. Now that my body has my attention, all of life has my attention in a much deeper way. Stopping with the constant mental story telling allows life to unfold fresh and new in each moment, as an expression of life – of which you are part.