Sunday, January 17, 2010

Non-attachment. Or, life with my new yoga mat.

I finally broke down and bought a new yoga mat. I'd worn holes in my old one—it was more than a bit disconcerting to practice while dislodging bits of rubber into the air. But, it's been hard to move on. I love this mat. Dark brown with stark cerulean tree branches growing from the bottom, a few peeking in from the top. It was grounding, soulful, the earth and sky melding together to balance my practice. It was warm, inviting, home. I don't know, in all this time, that I ever thought quite so hard about it, but this mat resonated with me. It was comfortable. Its darkness stood out against the pastel shades splattered across the room. As I don't wear glasses when I practice, my mat, my space alway shouted out to me, so different than everything else in the room. I wrote FLOW while practicing on this mat. I'd been through outrageous emotional ups and downs and throughout the chaos, my practice, and my mat, were stabilizers.

Whew. I know folks, that was ridiculous. I'm laughing at myself too.

But, in spite of my mat shredding apart, I couldn't move on.

I've been searching. Actually, I just tried to find a new one with the same design, but it was nowhere to be found. Finally, last week I broke down and ordered one from amazon, after consulting everyone in my house (who had less than zero interest), in helping me find my new rubber soulmate. I settled on bright fuchsia, with an asymmetrical lavendar flower design, subtle outlines barely visible until you're in down dog and are up close and personal.

It arrived Tuesday. I forgot to bring it to the studio for Wednesday's class. Friday's too.

Mat replacement denial.

I remembered it for this morning's class.

I walked past the wall of mats housed at the studio and saw my brown one, rolled tightly, towards the bottom of the S-Z shelf. I didn't stop, but walked into the studio and unrolled my new mat on the floor. It still had creases from being wrapped up in its plastic packaging. There was that subtle "new mat" smell, not bad enough to make me roll it up and stick it in the corner, but enough to distract me. I had to reconsider what color blanket would work with this mat, opting for a shade of medium blue. But, that didn't distract me as much as not knowing if I had the design facing the right way. I mean, who's to say? It's my mat. My flowers can face any way I want. But for more than half the class I considered flipping it around, to see if I felt more comfortable practicing with the flowers skewing right instead of left. I noticed that my mat was a darker shade of the molding around the bottom of the room. That my hands were slipping when normally they wouldn't be. That my blue toenails looked decidedly different against the purple pink. That this mat blended into the room more—the studio is painted shades of purple, blue and green. The bright color was almost jarring when my brown mat had been soothing.

Usually, in my life, I'm an uber-decider. I know, in the moment, whether I like a piece of art, if I'm meant to own a certain shirt, what we should be eating for dinner. So this threw me.

And I'm realizing, it's not about the mat. It's about letting go of comfort, of familiarity, of the past. It's moving into the unknown. Again. Grappling with not-knowing. Stretching in ways I haven't stretched yet. Allowing myself the freedom to try something new instead of holding on tight to my current reality.

Honestly, I'm generally content with being stuck where I am. But that's not what the universe is telling me my life is about.

So tomorrow I'll be back on my fuchsia mat. Working on my children's story. Searching for new design clients. Sending more FLOW vibes out into the world.


Day 12 is feeling like letting go is sort of like pulling a scab off when it's not quite ready.


Amy Oscar said...

I knew we were soul mates. I really GET this one. My only comment is this: The more you sweat on the new mat, the more familiar it will become. You know what I mean - both metaphorically and literally. Namaste.

Lisa Adams said...

I don't do yoga. But I do understand the emotion and concept you are grappling with here. For me it was getting a new car. But now my car has dark blue smudges where my left thigh goes from my ubiquitous dark-dyed denim rubbing there as I drive.

We all have our "breaking in" period of adjustment with things.

This is a post I am sure will resonate with everyone.

Gordon and Silber, P.C. said...

I can relate, having recent traumatic yoga mat issues too. The recent horror of rolling out a mat and realizing that the last time it was used was as a drop cloth to paint the living room. Then buying a replacement at the Sports Authority and having it smell like a toxic waste dump. In desperation using the mat that came withe Wii Fit and finding that it wouldn't lay flat and practically disintegrated upon jump backs. I haven't used the Gaim that you bought me yet, but I'm thinking it will be a huge improvement. Thanks babe.