If it weren’t for yoga and meditation I would be an addict.
The drug of choice would morph over time; some seasons addiction would manifest as peanut butter chocolate ice cream, some seasons as wine. Some seasons, obsessive work or travel, or the arm-chair journey of Instagram.
Without some practice of slowing down, without a ritual of tenderly listening to the everyday happenings in my wild mind and needy body, I would remain addicted to every escape from pain.
My practice is this simple but profound act of showing up everyday on my yoga mat, engaging with the most loyal presence of my life – my breathing.
My practice is one of moving through asanas like beads on a rosary, which keeps me clear and present. My practice is like a Wise Mother whispering, “You’re not going to fall for that again, are you?”
Even with the maternal, nurturing presence of the practice, I fail often. The other day, when my daughter spilled the entire pitcher of sticky strawberry lemonade all over the fridge and floor, instead of cleaning it up, I took “a digital hit” of Instagram. I chose to flee to a device instead of engaging and making a helpful move. But I’m watching, and thankfully being much more kind to myself now in those moments when I falter.
My yoga and meditation practices are instilling in me the self-awareness to notice when I’m spending too much time fleeing the present moment – and to begin engaging with it. And my kids give me this same reminder, in different ways, every day.
We’re learning, and we’re in this together. Teachers. Students. Mothers. Daughters. Yogis. Addicts. Friends. May the practice continue to counsel us, show us the way, and free us all. May it teach us to keep engaging lovingly with what is.