I will admit I thought I was done with this blog. It just felt like there was nothing else I needed to say; my insights are my own again. But after finishing this morning’s sadhana (YOU GUYS MY BABY SLEPT FROM 9-7! She’s perfect and got me back into an early practice by waking up at 3:45 for several weeks, and now she’s letting me wake up first. We will keep her), I received clear instructions to write this one, so I guess I’m not the boss of my blog. May someone benefit from my navel-gazing.
In talking with a friend about parenthood and struggles with self-fulfillment and pure love and all the works, I came to appreciate a change of heart, if you will, I’ve experienced without fully realizing it. Early on in my life, I started grappling with the very millennial dilemma of, “Who AM i? What am I supposed to DO with my life???” and could get pretty dang depressed and frantically anxious about it regularly. What was my PURPOSE? Because I certainly hadn’t found it yet, and time was a-wastin’.
This drive to find my Purpose led me to do and experience a lot of really cool things; I have been all over the world learning all kinds of interesting things and meeting all kinds of interesting people and working all kinds of interesting jobs, many of the do-gooder variety. For many years, I couldn’t sit still for all the bleeding my heart was doing for the acute suffering my eyes beheld, because I needed to FIX IT. That would be my Purpose.
And yet. No matter how hard I tried, I felt like there was always something there to hedge up the way. I never felt like I was getting it right. What I was doing wasn’t selfless enough or dangerous enough or effective enough, ever. I was always failing. I was always unfulfilled, knowing I simply wasn’t enough. People were still hurting horribly all around me. Why was God keeping me from fulfilling my Purpose???
Then I had a baby. And guess what? That wasn’t my Purpose, either, but motherhood did change me deeply. It gave me an excuse to sit and sit for hours every day just staring at my tiny human, simply loving, and it was the first time I’d experienced the joy of that kind of, well, mindfulness. I’ve always been slower-paced, but this was the first time I didn’t feel guilty about it. Someone needed me! For his SURVIVAL!
But after the novelty of being needed wore off, I started to get anxious again. What was I going to do with the time I’d been given? How could I, now, with this needy human infringing on all that time? How would I become worthwhile? Did I even know myself? You know--all the angsty questions.
Many many years ago, on a manic midnight drive up the mountains with a friend, I frantically yelled, “I just want to know who I am!!!” My friend sat there for a minute, possibly weighing the pros and cons of verbalizing his thoughts when I was so volatile, and finally said quietly, “Whenever I start to panic about not knowing who I am, that’s usually a pretty good sign I need to spend more time remembering whose I am.”
I realized in the moment that this was profound, but it wasn’t until I finished sadhana this morning that I understood that I am finally doing this. As I talked with my friend yesterday about finding acceptance for where we are, I realized I haven’t felt that oh-so-familiar restriction and unease in a very long time. Even in the depths of prenatal depression, for the first time, my crazy raging sadness wasn’t about my inability to perform life adequately--it was simply being sick in my brain for a season. It was terrible, but it wasn’t me.
That is why this yoga is a gift to me. It has changed my brain and allowed me to experience God, not necessarily in a new way, but in a much more consistently present way. It has illuminated my beliefs and brought them more fully into my core. If you are still searching for a way to achieve your peace and your knowingness of God, please consider giving this a try. Kundalini yoga and meditation are a beautiful companion to any spiritual practice and have radically deepened my devotion to finding capital-T Truth. This has led to similar desires to alleviate suffering around me that I have experienced most of my life, but my motives are different, because I don’t need people to need me in order to feel necessary.
My heart has been changed; I no longer feel frantic about finding my Purpose. I am not worried about what I do, because I’ve finally realized that I Am. And that is enough.
Exploring the spiritual side of things. Brevity is not my forte.