I wrote the following post in 2016 - about a year after my dad died. And then I didn't hit publish, because it felt like I was too close to it. But I just found it in my drafts, and wow, reading it took me right back there. When I was fumbling to find normal again, and thinking I could maybe see it but wasn't quite sure. And it's a relief to look back and think that yes, things have gotten better. But the rawness - that still makes my heart speed up a little, and my breath get short, because for sure that's how I felt most of the time that year after my dad died.
A childhood friend of mine died unexpectedly this weekend, and his funeral is actually taking place as I type this. The service is out of town, and I couldn't get there, but knowing that's where his loved ones are right now, and then finding this post. I don't really have words. The circle of life is brutal, and unyielding. I hope they're able to find something to hold on to when they don't have a clue how to do it. And in fact I wrote another post about grieving here. But right now, I'm just thinking about them, and reading this, and wanting to hold everyone I love a little closer.
At any rate, here's the post I wrote in 2016:
I went to yoga last night when I didn't particularly want to, but that's what I do lately - I just go, every day, and then I see what happens when I get there. And usually, like last night, what happens is that it's awesome - either because I'm strong and surprise myself, or because I lie on my back and listen to the class happening around me while I pretend to sleep - and either way, it works for me. But yoga didn't turn into a 7 day a week thing until after my dad died last summer - before that I exercised a lot, sure. But because I like it, not because I thought I was definitely going to lose my shit if I didn't show up. So when people remark on the will power or commitment it takes to show up 7 days a week - well, I'm not quite sure that's it. Because I think the truth is that the people who are there every.single.day - we're doing it because we're a little broken, not because we're extra whole. And it's broken in a bunch of ways - grief is just one of them, but whatever it is, there's probably something happening under the surface.
I'm incredibly grateful to have found something that kept my shit together this past year - and something that was actually good for me - but let's not mistake the motivations. My joke for the past year was that some people deal with hard things by drinking two bottles of wine a night, and instead I just got really good at yoga. And that's the truth - because when there's a disruption in your life, especially one that leaves you reeling, something has to change. It's a no go to just keep moving like it didn't happen. Trust me, I tried that. So you latch onto something, and if you're lucky it's something that gives you back bandwidth instead of increasing your shitshow. But the ones who are showing up 7 days a week for months - it's probably not for the abs. Although - my shit show is slowing down, and normal is coming back to me. But I do like the abs, and I do like the friends, and I do like the yoga. So I'm still showing up there, just not with quite the same edge that was there before. It's a bit of a relief.