“The great thing about getting older is that you don’t lose all the other ages you’ve been.”—Madeleine L’Engle
I stumbled upon this quote earlier in the week and it resonated with me. I celebrated another year of my birth on Saturday, which always makes me a bit pensive. I’ve learned a great deal about myself in the last 10 years but I’m especially proud of the confidence I’ve gained since turning 30 just a year ago. Sure, I had my minor meltdown. I found wrinkles and dimples and sometimes I can’t remember if I’m coming or going (this is quite possibly the result of too much partying in my early years or my overall general spazziness). I have slowly noticed the effects of aging. I have no concept of depth perception and can often be seen walking into walls or people (once I nearly collided with a family of four while on a bicycle in Newport. There’s really no way to recover from that kind of embarrassment. Honestly). But maybe this can’t be attributed to age at all: perhaps I am just not a coordinated person in my everyday life.
That being said, when I turned 30 something changed (not my coordination skills, sadly). I realized what I wanted out of life and decided to return to the basics; to indulge in the things I loved all over again. I missed writing more than anything. When Jackson and I called it quits in October, it made sense to chronicle the highs and lows of my breakup and reconnect with this passion, even if it would lead me to schmaltzy, sentimental, and sad places.
This past week I decided to lay off some of the Jackson stuff for a while. I’m sure this will make Jackson, his family, and friends incredibly happy. I don’t think I’ve ever used this blog to trash his name but it’s time I focus on some of the many positives in my life. I haven’t been curled in the fetal position this entire time and I wouldn’t want to give the impression that I’m not doing okay. Because I do, in fact, feel great.
Jackson will pop up from time to time but he’s no longer a key figure in this story. Cool? Okay, moving on!
Over the past two months, I’ve developed a healthy obsession with what some might consider an unhealthy form of yoga called Bikram. Each week I willingly sit in on a 90-minute class with 70 other people in a room heated to 110 degrees and I fight the urge to vomit, hyperventilate, and admit defeat. This class has become a metaphor for me and proves I’m capable of much more than I give myself credit for. Sweating through the discomfort and quieting the voices in my head—this is proven to happen in a Bikram class; I don’t actually need counseling, thankyouverymuch—brings me to unfamiliar yet reassuring territory. In addition to the physical changes I have started to notice on my body, the feeling of euphoria I experience at the end of each class is the reason I keep returning. That and the Michael Franti look-alike who works out in his boxer shorts. Yum. I wonder if it’s strange that I get so much joy from a practice that tortures the body and fucks with the mind.
Whatever the reason, these 90 minute toxin-releasing, deep breathing sessions and 26 poses have helped me to restore my inner peace. For that I am eternally grateful.