The third of the month marks a particular milestone in pursuit of completing 4040 list. As of today I have done sun salutations for two months. My total thus far is 258 sun salutations.
The metaphors for life that yoga presents are endless. The past few days I've been contemplating how different every single sun salutation is from the rest. The first one is usually especially tight and the last one is generally the loosest. But in the middle, if I concentrate on my heels coming closer to the mat, that rotation will be different from the one where I think about making sure my shoulders are firmly pulled and squeezed together on my back.
Understanding and accepting that my practice will always present different challenges and different joys reminds me that off my mat I will find the same. A day at work, moments with my daughter, interactions with my friends and family, sitting in front of my laptop writing my novel - none of these regular moments will remain constant. New variables will enter that will shift how that interaction or moment looks. And just as I'm okay with that on my mat, I'm growing evermore okay with it off my mat.
My favorite yoga class has been discontinued. It was held on Sunday afternoons when childcare was not an issue. It was the way I marked and honored my sabbath. Things change. Schedules change. Nothing stays the same. My 258 sun salutations are moving me closer to cracking open my Yoga Journal magazine and trying out one of the prescribed home practices outlined monthly. Before the 4040 list, tackling a home practice seemed daunting and unrealistic. I so love the energy in the room practicing yoga at the studio. I couldn't imagine practicing at home. Alone.
And yet. For two months I have done that very thing. I have done a wee little yoga practice on my own. And it's been wonderful. It has nourished me. My body is getting stronger. My mind and spirit are stronger for the practice, and I am happy.
My daughter offered unsolicited one day last week, "Mom, your bottom is half straight. I don't mean to look at your bottom, but I bet your teachers look at your bottom in class. It's probably the best you've ever done, Mom."
I'm not exactly sure what she was trying to articulate with the "bottom half straight" comment. I suspect she's noticing that my legs are straighter than they've been in the past, and I was facing away from her, so bottom was the first thing that came to mind. But what I love most is the fact that she's paying attention and paid me a sincere, encouraging compliment.
This practice is all good. All. Good.