After being immobile on my back in excruciating pain from a spasm for two days, I’m finally able to sit up on my own. My cat just coughed up a hairball on my couch – which
would require me prying myself out of my recliner in order to clean it up..but I’m picking my battles right now. The hairball will wait. As will, unfortunately, the kid’s and adult yoga classes that I love teaching, the physical training I am doing with my husband and son for a spartan race, and the laundry.
Yesterday I couldn’t sit up to read or focus on anything, so today I am especially grateful that I can extend my arms, t-rex style, enough to type out this blog post. I’m grateful that I could hold my prayer book on my lap and recite the daily blessings of my tradition. I’m grateful I can sing again. (did I mention I was also super sick right before the back went out?)
One of the daily blessings (nisim b’chol yom) is gratitude to Adonai, our God, who lifts up the fallen. (Zokeif k’fufim) Another way to interpret this is gratitude for rising to a new day. And I am certainly thankful for that. To rise up, to breathe without pain, (unlike yesterday) and to have the gift of life. A deeper appreciation for the other morning prayers arose for me…modah ani, thank you God for restoring my soul to me upon awakening, for giving me another opportunity to live as fully as a can, with what I have available. Asher yatzar, praised be God who created this body, and all the pathways and openings that allow for harmony within…this heart beating, these sacred breaths…the ability to use the bathroom – seriously, I take that one for granted. Instead of saying, “Oh man, I have to pee again?” I can say , “Yes! I get to pee again!” I can fine tune my perception, and see my life through the lens of gratitude and awe, central themes in the Jewish tradition.
As much as I detest being sick, feeling weak, and slowing down, I also know that there is a natural ebb and flow to our lives. It cannot be all flow, all the time. A non- stop beautiful ocean wave is called a tsunami. Not so fun.
So I will embrace the ebb in my life this week. I will use it as an opportunity to listen more deeply to the still small voice within. I will be vulnerable in offering up my voice, and sharing myself in this way. And I will embrace the sacred insights of my soul as they rise up, written in the sand, before the next wave comes in.
Namaste and Shalom,