As I work to clear away residual pain, as new triggers appear and I feel and face and release what was, I find myself wanting to connect ever more deeply to my body. I realize I’m missing my daily yoga practice again, after years of just practicing once in awhile or incorporating certain poses before and after every workout.

For so long, my yoga mat was a safe haven for me. A wonderful place to connect to myself and move with joy. Yet once life cracked me open and all the ACoA realizations kicked in, I found my yoga mat to be too much of a mirror. Too much of my truth. Too much of my pain. Too much of feeling disconnected from my body. I’d start practice after practice and just cry. The same thing happened to me with my regular runs and training for races. I’d lace up my shoes and cry. The places that had once been a solace and a safe place to think deeply were exactly what I didn’t want while facing that much pain and the giant task of healing. I didn’t want silence and thinking. I needed all-consuming brain and body action. So I started rock climbing. And I’m so glad I did.
.
The “must be very present or I will die” nature of rock climbing meant that my brain and my body were so busy I didn’t have a free moment to think or hurt or worry or wonder. About my dying step-father (cirrhosis of the liver; talk about re-traumatization given my mother died the same way 20 years earlier), about my marriage ending, about the financial woes these two situations created. Climbing allowed me to simply be present to what was. I’d climb at the gym or outdoors and hours would pass before I even thought about all that was going on in my life. It was exactly what I needed. And I’m so glad I now climb.

But I’m ready, anew, for my silent practices. The ones that allow me to think big and be silent and move with joy. I take that as a very good sign.

📷: @fetisova.as