Tuesday, January 6, 2009

increments and fog

the thing about changes is that they are often not very noticable.
I'm thinking about all of the time I've spent in the weight room, on the yoga mat, on the elliptical, on the spin bike. I know I've strengthened my body, I know that my muscles have done whatever it is that muscles do when you work them. I know I'm more flexible, and that I can hold positions longer than I used to be able to.
but these changes sometimes just seem so slight, it's hard to get excited about it.
this morning in yoga we did what the instructor called an "L pike," a position to help train the body to be ready for a handstand. [handstands are what the really proficient yoga people do: they put their hands on a mat, in the middle of a room, and gracefully raise their body and legs until they are upside down, nothing supporting them but their hands and their exceptional core strength. I am no where close to doing this.]
the instructor had us start a leg-length away from the mirrored wall, with our back to the wall. we then put our hands down on the floor, then placed our feet behind us on the wall, walking them up until our body made a right angle, bent at the waist, feet flat against the wall. then we could lift one leg at a time, experimenting with the feeling of the handstand, yet keeping one leg supported against the wall.
sounds easy, right?
my feet left about 15 sweaty footprints on the mirrored wall, and my hands were so damp I could barely grip the floor.

someday I will do this with such great inner calm that I will not sweat at all.
deep breath.
not today.
I have more baby steps to walk between here and there. little increments of improvement. not always measurable, and sometimes only visible in my own internal faith-colored view.

today it has snowed most of the day. the flakes have been so small that it has taken more than usual to create the depth we now have on the lawns and sidewalks and roads. the clouds have hung down so low that they've become fog, as my daughter pointed out to me as we drove home this afternoon.
each hour today the clouds have released an increment of snow that when added to those of the previous hours has resulted in a significant pile on our city. I suppose each little hour wasn't really much of a statement, but the cumulative result is significant, and beautiful.

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