January 2010

I can’t believe that January is over.   But as months go, it is one that I’d just as soon go by quickly.

I seem to recall January being a quiet month in years past.  Hunkering down to spend the winter indoors.  Finding inside entertainment.  My mom used to do jigsaw puzzles in the winter.  I remember the card table permanently set up during January and February, with a puzzle in various stages of completeness.

There is always a project or two in the back of my mind that I will tackle in the winter. This year, it is a vow to get the hundreds of slides from past travel adventures scanned into digital images.  I’ve had that same project in mind for 2 or 3 years now.  But this year, I’m committed.  I’ve easily gone through 8 slide reels so far, and probably have just as many to go.  The process is time-consuming… but not nearly as time-consuming as the editing job that I will take on when this part of the process is over.

Is it worth it?  I think so.  Each image brings back not only a memory, but a sensation.  Beautiful times!

In the past few months, I have found a new pleasure in relaxing.   Hanging out.  Unwinding.

Tom has often been concerned that I always have to have something to do.  The need to be busy.  I think I’ve done an admirable job of dispelling that notion lately.

Although I’m still not a big fan of watching TV for hours on end, napping, or just sitting listening to music, I feel I’ve made big strides by making fewer lists for the weekend.  By reading in front of the fire more.  By enjoying photo editing.  By baking bread.  By rubbing the dog.  Just hanging out at home.

More often than not these winter days, the answer to “did you have a good weekend” is a resounding “yes”, and it is a heartfelt “yes” even though it doesn’t mean that I “did” anything.

No, not the joke about Carnegie hall — a way to think about your life.

I have always respected that “doing” yoga is expressed as “practicing” yoga.  It’s an acknowledgement that this is something that we never fully master.  It is always a journey.

During my meditation practice, I stumbled upon the perspective that we can “practice” in life.  Even when we don’t quite feel like practicing yoga, meditating, or even being in a good mood,  that we can “practice” it.  Ok, we can pretend.

Hafez, a fourteenth-century Sufi poet suggests that we act great at all times.  Whether are practicing contentment on a bad day, or sitting in meditation watching our mind run around in circles.

Think about it.  “Pretending” to be a good mood tends to turn into a good mood.  “Pretending” to enjoy yoga poses often turns into an enjoyment.

This is an idea that could really catch on.