I must remind myself that my present moment is not my forever moment …
For years I asked students to join me in the present moment … to leave all worry aside as they focused on the breath and the current moment, leaving the past behind and the future alone. But why? Why would I encourage the present moment? Was it because of Buddha and what we have come to believe he once said to his own students …“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.”
Who even knows for sure he said this or if it’s what he really meant? Who really cares? The present moment is only a moment in time, just like past and future moments where one can find themselves swimming aimlessly, lost and longing for answers that never come. What if the present moment is devastating? What then?
Take my present moment for example: a movement teacher who’s whole identity is wrapped around the ability to move and inspire through movement has been diagnosed with a degenerative condition of the left hip. A condition that requires me to modify my lifestyle and to stop moving. For the past two weeks all I’ve done is be present with the words subchondral cyst within the acetabulum, femoral head edema, severe osteoarthritis, tearing of the anterior and lateral labrum, tearing of the gluteus medius and minimus, and hip replacement. My present moment sucks! I’m lost in the despair of my current self and I feel helpless. So, what shall I do?
Should I stay present because that’s the yogi/buddhist way that I have practiced and taught for years or do I say fuck the present and begin to move forward with a damn plan?! This present moment of mine sucks and I’m no longer scared to say so!
Tomorrow I return to teaching after six weeks away from my studio, my classes, and my students. Being away from teaching has truly proved to me how deeply in love I am with teaching, yet I’m nervous to return. I’m nervous because there is a piece of me that feels as if I have failed … How could this be happening to me? I’m a healer, and now I’m broken. It’s all so overwhelming and for the past couple of weeks I have felt defeated, scared, lonely, and totally heartbroken over my present moment.
I’ve come out on the other side of darkness many times in life including the breakup of my relationship when I was 10 weeks pregnant, surviving nine months of pregnancy by myself, having my baby and winning custody, losing my studio lease and having to merge with another business, being sued in a bullshit case against the State of Colorado, and then losing my business again, only to work my butt off to rebrand and rebuild after I pretty much lost everything. The way I looked at life is that I had won. Life had thrown everything at me, and finally, after six long years I had made a come back and life was good. My son and I have a great life together and this summer was the best summer I’ve ever experienced filled with one physical adventure after another. But just when I thought I had it figured out and had won the battle, life says to me …‘don’t get comfortable, you’re about to go for another wild ride.’
Well, here we go! Another roller coaster ride with it’s deep roar of speed in to the twisting jungles of steel, flipping around violently as it enters the darkness of hanging upside down before it returns right side up, climbing slow and steady toward the next downhill surprise that life has in store for you. I can choose to hold on tight and scream my way through the ride or I can let go and ride. If I stay in the present moment I’m holding on tight and screaming. But if I let go and ride I pave the road toward my future self – my future healthy, strong, wise self. The present moment is no longer a place I can hang in any longer. My mourning must come to an end, my fear must be doused, and my courage must be sparked if I am to defy my condition to come back smarter in body and freer in mind – a newer version of me and the teacher inside – I must let go now as it’s time for a wild ride.
My life has never been about staying in or accepting my present moment, it’s always been about moving forward and asking life “what do you have next for me to conquer?” I forgot about this lesson because life had gotten too easy for me … This new path I’m about to walk is scary, and for quite some time it has felt devastating and unconquerable. But it’s not. I may not conquer, but I will defy.
My hip injury and the condition I’m in may be my present moment but it is most definitely not my forever moment!
I will let go and ride, and as I ride I will absorb the lessons that I need. These are the lessons that will help me to come out on the other side of this so I can become the teacher that life is grooming me to be. Here’s to my future moments and to all the lessons I’ll learn as I ride with my hands thrown high in the sky twisting and turning my way back to movement prowess and longevity! Don’t be held back from your present moment. Take time to feel the present and then make the choice to move forward. There is no reason to look back or to remain idle, move on and ride.
“The key to happiness is excitement for the future.”
I’m excited for what’s to come next, may it be stem cell therapy, hip replacement, movement therapy or a life long limp accompanied by limitation and chronic pain. By choosing to move out of the present moment I’m able to create excitement for my future on an every day basis. I’m excited to learn how to ‘deal’ with my diagnosis and even more excited that I am a movement teacher who has, at least temporarily, lost the function of her left hip so that I can become a teacher who can help other movers find peace and acceptance around their story of limitation.
Their story may not match mine, but anyone who suffers from movement limitation and chronic pain needs someone to ride the roller coaster with them, and from a deep personal space I’m going to be that person. My come back is not just for me, it’s for everyone who comes in my life that needs me to go through what I am going through so I can become the healer I am meant to become. My present moment made me sit around and feel sorry for myself, which is something I can no longer accept. Shifting and choosing to think about my future self makes me soar with energy and hope. It’s now time for me to get up and become what life is asking me to be …a broken healer who loves to move and groove!
This may be a long ride but it’s also going to be fun, interesting, life-changing, and forever filled with ups and downs and good and bad. It’s the ride I was put on when I was born and it’s the ride I will stay on until I’m done. It’s my ride, but it’s everyone’s ride.
We all have moments: don’t stay present, look to the future and say ‘hello, nice to meet you, let’s be friends’
Here’s to the wild ride we call life, my friends. I’m glad my ride includes all of you … I look forward to sharing my come back story and what it takes for me to recover and return to the movement health and longevity that I desire. Life never stays the same and for that we should be thankful. Even when change brings bad news or a shift we were not expecting, we must understand that it takes a lot more energy to resist change than it does to accept it. I didn’t want change, I liked my life as it was, but change doesn’t mean life is over. It simply means life is about to get bigger and broader, filled with the space to create and evolve to the next version of you. With every new challenge life grows. The major life changes that I resisted in my past have always ended with me standing in the sun, soaking in the brightness and the glory, on the other side of darkness. Every time I stand on the opposite side of darkness my life becomes more beautiful and fulfilling. This is my present moment. It’s not my forever moment.