Waiting for the Rain

October 22, 2021

This morning there is a pleasant chill in the air. I'm wearing my red fuzzy llama socks and soaking up the rain kissed breeze from my studio window. Here in Dublin, California, my suburban desert, I have been waiting for the rain for months. Summer's first hot days in June gave way to golden hills in July and soaring temperatures that turned the hills brown by August. I have been staring at those brown hills, thirsty for the color green. In California, we are waiting for the relief of a rain storm to fill the lakes and reservoirs, to quench the thirsty trees, to turn the brown hills emerald green.

Waiting for rain is like waiting to exhale. Observing the pause between inhalation and exhalation makes letting go so much more satisfying. And yet, our pause has been so long. Much longer than a moment. We are waiting for rain, we are waiting for the world to be normal again (what does that even mean anymore?) We are waiting here somewhere between the world we left behind in early 2020 and the new world post pandemic. I find myself in constant flux, re-calibrating my schedule, negotiating what spaces feel safe, adjusting my expectations. I know I am not alone. We are all finding our new normal.

Autumn is a time of transition. Observing trees each fall, we learn the wisdom of letting go. Being in the process of evolving is so much harder than springs' renewal. I find myself practicing twists this week. In yoga, twists revolve the spine, massage the organs, and deepen the breath. In Marichyasana III, I lift and revolve from my torso. I pause, taking a moment to notice the space around my lungs, the turn of my belly and I twist a little deeper. A closed twist asks the body to celebrate space after we have left the pose. Some poses are like spring's renewal- in backbends we rejoice in the space around the lungs and the heart during the pose. Closed twists like Marichyasana III or Parvritta Trikonasana ask us to do the hard work of being in the pose and rejoice in the space we created after we have left the pose. Sure, we can avoid the twist altogether but won't we miss out on the benefits by refusing to be uncomfortable?

Poet and philosopher Rumi wrote:

"Your hand opens and closes and opens and closes. If it were always a fist or always stretched open, you would be paralyzed. Your deepest presence is in every small contracting and expanding, the two as beautifully balanced and coordinated as birdwings."

Stay present to yourself. You are revolving and evolving along with our new normal here on earth. It is messy, uncomfortable but so necessary. Open your eyes, feel your feet on the earth, be present-you won't want to miss out on the exhalation of spring, the awakening of a renewed self.

With hands together,