Silver Linings

The gift of grace

The past two weeks have been pretty intense around here. The man I had been married to for half of my life died. The man I had been seeing for the last five months started playing mind games. And my best friend’s horse needed major emergency surgery.

Yeah — I think that’s it.

To say that I have been on an emotional roller coaster would be a massive understatement. Each event held its own turbulent emotions and stress. But I found the silver lining in each — because if you look hard enough — there is always a silver lining.

The place where that silver lining usually reveals itself to me is in the time I spend on my mat.

Thankfully, my best friend’s horse is recovering nicely from his ordeal. He’s due to be discharged from our vet school in the next week or so. The time I spent sitting with her during his surgery and reaching out to her during his post-op recovery has infused new life into our relationship. While she and I have always been close — she is Thelma to my Louise — it feels like we reconnected after a few years of slowly drifting apart. Life gets in the way. You lose touch. Plans become harder to make. Now we remember — we will always be there for each other. Time on my mat brought me to this place of grace.

Once the mind games started with the man I was seeing, I tapped out. He had attempted to play games previously and I had called him on it. My warning shot — as it were. Three weeks later, the games were back. This time, I didn’t play. I allowed the relationship to simply unravel. Now I remember — I am always relieved when the complications of romance end for me. Time on my mat brought me to this place of grace.

I sorted through All. The. Photo. Albums. that chronicled our life together. I cried happy tears for the good years and sad tears for the loss of him. Both through divorce and now, death. But I also remembered that he was free. Free from the physical body and its disease that had trapped him over 25 years ago. He was moving, running, fishing, and playing his guitar — all the things he had to relinquish in this life. And I found myself smiling through the tears. Now I remember him — the man I married, not the man I divorced — and how rich life was when we walked it hand in hand. Time on my mat brought me to this place of grace.

In the quiet of my yoga room, I rest on my mat. I lie in Corpse Pose and I allow my mind to roam free. Consciousness recedes ever so slightly and the events of my day float by. Thoughts are clouds in this state and I let them roll gently by. And if by magic, I can make out the tiny shimmer in each one. The Silver Linings. Even on the very darkest storm cloud, like the one that holds my grief for the father of my children, I notice that soft glow.

Humans behave as though life never changes. We hang on to that which brings us happiness with both hands — tightly. We forget that transformation and growth are why we’re here. We are here to face the challenges as well as embrace the joys.

Life is a delicate balance.

Time on my mat provides me with the mental and emotional coordination I need to keep putting one foot in front of the other, with grace. Time on my mat provides me with perspective to see the larger picture, with grace. Time on my mat helps me accept my Now, just as it is so that I can focus on those silver linings, with grace.

As always — grace finds me on my mat.