"Life has a gap in it, it just does. You don't go crazy trying to fill it..." - Geraldine, from the movie Take This Waltz
Since last we spoke, I have been creating some space inside of my own life. It's something I find both deeply liberating, but also terrifying as well. It is a leap of faith to step down from something that is "working." It is a small act of daring to move out of a role that you have let define you for a good, long time.
How does it feel upon your naked skin once you take the well-worn hat down off your head? What do you call yourself when you can no longer utilize the tried-and-true titles you have subscribed to for so long?
When you remove a critical piece of geography - a foundational point of your life's landscape - from your world - how do you keep from feeling un-moored, adrift inside a suddenly vast & empty canvas of sky, sea and as-yet un-realized potential?
This month, I stepped down from a long-standing teaching appointment inside our local community.
For 8 years, I have faithfully rolled out my little sticky mat, taken some deep, bolstering breaths, and carried the medicine I had to give to my local people.
It came in the form of movement and sweat and belly laughs and handstands and a million-and-one plank poses and some other deep, ridiculous, fun things besides.
You and me - we moved inside this space together. Tending each other as we moved into the ether of the breath, the canvas of the heart & muscles & a bedrock of Intention, too.
I donned the hat of the teacher and was happy - so happy - to dwell inside that realm that we co-created there.
Until. I wasn't. Well. Not exactly.
See, over the years, I've gotten this nudge. This nagging message from my body - from my own little Jiminy Cricket self - and from witnessing the way the yoga world continues to move, at large - that I am being called toward Something Else inside this world.
That my Calling - whatever it may be - cannot solely be found instructing down-dogs and forearm balances, at this point in time. That the poses - as I have always said - are merely just a gateway. A doorway to a deeper understanding. A preparatory place to get us ready for the Real Work - of showing up Bravely, Powerfully, Vulnerably & WELL inside this Life.
i.e. "Stop teaching just poses, lady." "The time has come to start to teach the work of this Life." .....
A little grandiose, yeah? ....
I have learned, though, that when the nudges come you must follow them. That if you ignore them, it will be to your own detriment. That if you silence the call within your own heart, you will be deaf, dumb & blind to the other Wisdom & Information that Universe wants to impart to you.
When you hear the Call you must Follow. Even when you're not sure quite where it leads. Even if it means forsaking a familiar landscape. Even if it calls you far out beyond your comfort zones and leaves you temporarily adrift in a strange & foreign land. Even if it means forsaking your familiar and beloved titles, totems & tasks.
Even if inside the space between leaping and landing - you peer deep into an endless GAP... a crevasse of Unknowing & Fear & Mind-F*ckery & a hint of Loss, as well - you LEAP.
You step into the Gap.
Because it is not longer safe or solvent or appropriate to dwell in the land of the Familiar any longer. Because you know that the Voice of god, the goddess, the Universe, the Self (who comes to you when you are quiet, and listening, and inside dreams and visions and looking for What's Next...) does not ask you to stay safe inside this Life. She does not ask you to keep quiet, shuffle along, and play comfortably inside this space.
She asks you to summon your strength, your wits, your courage & your faith..
And step into the Path that lies ahead.
Even if that path, for now, exists as only Space.
By moving forward... You create The Way.
So. Inside this liminal space - between What-Has-Been & What-Is-Yet-To-Become... I greet you.
I thank you.
For being on & around & inside this Journey with me.
Here's to moving out beyond familiar titles & formulas.
Here's to doing the thing that doesn't always make sense - but is So Damn RIGHT there's no denying it.
Here's to showing up bravely, boldly, wobbly, knock-kneed & praying all the while...
May we be guided safely into what lies ahead.
May we have the courage to leave behind what is no longer for us.
And may we not rush in trying to fill the Empty Space. The In-Between. The holy gAp.
May we lean into it. To What Is. To What May Be.
And trust that as we move into the work that we are called...