Hey Pals. I know it has been what, like almost a year since I’ve blogged? To say I’ve been busy, is the understatement of the century! It was around this exact time last year, that life as I knew it, was changing in more ways than I had planned for or expected. Yes, I was pregnant, with a baby girl a few months away… I KNEW that! Brandon and I were making plans for our future, as well as our present, when, well, things changed that changed our idea of what the future looked like…
This quote really does say it best. The past year has been a whole lot of chaos. A huge promotion that promised freedom from financial stress. An unexpected demotion that put us in a pickle. A big sour hairy pickle. Not the kind you want on a stick at the fair, or cut up on top of your burger. A scramble to survive. The birth of a beautiful baby girl. A letter of resignation. A lawsuit. Fear. Lawyers. Stress. Conflict. The saga continues…
“Fight! they must fall, and thou must live, victor upon this plain!”
There have been many times over this last year that I have referred to the Bhagavad Gita. It is an inspiring story of war — not war as we know it in simple human terms — but the war of the soul, the war of the spirit, the war for justice, the war of destiny. The basic premise of the book is that the warrior Arjuna, is conflicted, moments before he is to wage a war against members of his own family. He is on the side of justice; his friends, and even some of his family members have been greedy, and ignorant. But he does not want to fight. He doesn’t want to be responsible for the bloodshed, for the outcome. Krishna, who is his spiritual teacher (and a great warrior), can’t help Arjuna win the battle, but agrees to drive his chariot, and as he drives the chariot, he gives Arjuna advice and inspiration that leads him through this epic battle. And basically it comes down to this. It is Arjuna’s destiny to fight this battle. If he does not fight the battle, the very fabric of the future will be affected. The destinies of all future generations rest in his hands, in his willingness to accept his duty, to perform his dharma, or purpose, and to let go of attachment to the outcome, and instead focus on how his action is a service to the Divine.
“When doubts haunt me and disappointments stare me in the face and I see not one ray of hope on the horizon, I turn to the Bhagavad Gita and find a verse to comfort me; I immediately begin to smile in the midst of overwhelming sorrow.”
One of the most difficult things about difficult moments in life, is that we do not get to decide, and we do not know, how long they will last. Because of that, we often feel like giving up before the battle is done, before the wisdom of the suffering has been revealed. What we need, at moments like these, is endurance, and the ability to perform our duty and our actions tirelessly, without letting our emotions and thoughts distract us, exhaust us, or deter us. NO ONE is immune from the inevitable battles of life. As my beloved continues to face his battle, to fight it, I have to remind him, that he is here in this moment, because of his destiny, and also his choice. And I stand with him, facing my own fears and challenges, because of my destiny, and my choice. I can’t say enough about how the practice of yoga continues to hold me and guide me and inspire me and nourish me on this journey called life.
You see my friends, giving up isn’t a choice, for any of us really. I know you. I know you to be noble, and well-intentioned, with a good heart, with a fierce heart. I know some of the battles you are fighting. But we have to remember that we are NOT the victims of our circumstances. We are in this moment because our destiny has brought us here to teach us something, AND because of our choices. We have a choice in every moment. When you struggle in your marriage, or even in divorce, remember that at some point you chose that partner. When your life feels overrun with the chaos of being a parent, remember that you chose that child, or those children. When you struggle in your job, in staying or in leaving it, remember that is your choice. When the moment rises where you initiate change, the change is your choice. The wisdom of the heart that guides you is your destiny. But stay strong. Stay focused. Don’t give up. Don’t give in. Don’t indulge in the lies of fear, or entitlement, revenge or apathy. Set your sets on the highest high, have trust that no matter the struggle, you are not alone, you are held in the arms of something so much greater than your little smart mind, your little fearful mind, could possibly fathom.
I believe in you. I believe in the struggle. I believe it is for a reason. Even in this last year, in the chaos of it, I have reaped bountiful blessings. I have never felt closer to my husband. I am learning to let go of the fear of financial uncertainty and trust that all that I need will be provided. I am learning to find thankfulness for the mess of motherhood, to let go of perfection for the beauty of reality. I am seeing abundance in an entirely new way. I am feeling less entitled, less attracted to soothing my fears with things. I am learning to ASK for help, to ACCEPT help, to admit I don’t have it all together and yes please I’d love your help and thank you so much and no I know I am not now foreverly indebted to you for your act of kindness. I owe no one anything, except my presence. The more I relax and trust and have faith, and be a servant of my life, the more presence I have to give. So thank you, life, for giving me this battle, for giving my husband this battle to fight, for all it is teaching us, for the ways it is transforming us, and strengthening us, and inspiring us. And for all of you, bless you in your struggles. May you find what you need to keep going, to fight the good fight, to keep your head up, to keep your heart open. And if you need some inspiration, read the Bhagavad Gita. Ekanth Easwaran’s translation is om-azing. Om. Amen. Hallelujah!
This song popped into my head as I wrote this today… Maybe it will make you smile!