It was the best of times, it was the worst of times

I’m quite a fan of Christmas. I love my family, faults and all. They love me back, they always have and I know they always will. The liberation and contentment that comes from unconditional love is the most special thing on earth I think.

In my last yoga class before Christmas my teacher urged us to talk to the person next to us, to tell them what we most wanted for Christmas. My mind was blank, I didn’t really want anything for Christmas. I just assumed Christmas would be what it alway is: time together with my loved ones. We’re all getting older and over the years Christmas has mellowed into a stable, undramatic adult affair of talking, drinking, eating. Polite bargaining over who washes up the lunchtime pans, and whether we can get out for a stroll before it gets too dark. Nothing grand, positively banal to some. Reassuring to me.

dove of peaecMy teacher clearly has more dramatic family relationships than I do, since he was big on the message of bringing yogic openness and peace to the festive season. “Just breathe” he urged us as we drifted away after class, exchanging festive wishes and brief synopses of our holiday plans.

Now in the aftermath of the biggest family row that I’ve ever experienced, I still haven’t found my breath again. I’m looking back on Boxing Day lunchtime and trying to make sense of it all. How the family dynamic shattered apart, with ill-considered words thrown out, all judgment and no compassion.

building bridges.jpgMy role — that of onlooker. I was too taken by surprise to react to this outburst with anything other than silent shock. I’m not sure my yoga has prepared me well for sudden violence.

But I guess it has prepared me for listening and loving. And I’m going to need to do a lot of that over the coming months if I can ever hope to see some bridges being built, after being pretty comprehensively burnt.

Om shanti

5 thoughts on “It was the best of times, it was the worst of times

Add yours

  1. Ram Dass once said that if you think you are enlightened, go spend time with family. How true!!! We can be cruising along on an even keel and then we come together and are thrown back into old patterns of dysfunctionality. Samskaras. Just becoming aware of the patterns is hugely helpful. It helps put the explosion into a context and actually makes it seem comical. Well almost! We have had our share of explosive moments and joyful moments too this Christmas. That’s family! I think of it as a cauldron where we get exposed to folks with whom we may have very little in common. Great preparation for the bigger cauldron of the world.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

WordPress.com.

Up ↑

mettatsunami

Tales from the inner and outer world

Views from the Podium

A Blog. A Book. A Yoga Community.

Peregrine's Progress

Books, Cinema, Food, Photography, Theatre and Travel

Brooklyn Mellows

Coffee, Kirtan, Comics, Counterculture

Radical Yoga

with Colin Hall

The everyday vegetarian UK

Recipes, reviews and musings of a vegetarian in meat fuelled world

Paperback Yoga

Modern Yoga in the Looking Glass.

musingnude

prose and poetry

flossyfeet

Turning left up the road less travelled..

Yoga with Marita

Education & Inspiration for Yoga Teachers

My Daily Yoga Practice

Inquire the truth of everything

From Outside The Mall

Celebrations. Lamentations. Stories. Strategies. Humor. Heartbreak. Love. Loss. Dementia. Mental Health. Social Work. Personal. Political. Views. News. Poems. Prose. Anecdotes. Made up notes.

Aarna Yoga

Journey to Strength

Iyengar Yoga Center of Denver

Spreading the teachings of BKS Iyengar

Strong Lotus Yogi

Yoga Teacher. Practicing Yogi

CocoLokeLiving

Insights, Thoughts & Community News

Andy Yoga

Yoga, Photography, and Fitness, oh my!

Scrappy Yoga

Stories from an unwavering spirit trying to find balance

Jess’s practice blog

Reflections on the moving body as practice

%d bloggers like this: