This is my mama. I miss her so. At 85 years old she has returned to Southern Africa where we lived for many years and is visiting my oldest sister and her family there. She is sending photos of dinners and Cape Town and local friends. Amazing.
But I miss her. And as I walked today I thought of what it is that I miss: her presence, her company, her listening. She always had time for me. She was there.
I think of how Lily waited for me to see the picture she'd made as I finished an Instagram post this morning, as I scrolled through my email, scrambling to tuck a few responses into my outbox before we left the house. Was I there for her?
I read, study, practice, listen, learn, teach nearly incessantly. Mostly for the joy of it. I am always aware of the wonder of my work and the privilege that is mine in what I get to do each day. But recently I've become aware of a relentlessness of what Needs To Be Done. The posts, the marketing, the books waiting beside my desk, the training I'm participating in... And I return to the thought of my mom. I love her for who she is, who she was with me, not what she'd read or practiced. Just her.
I know she modeled self-reflection and journaling and deep devotion to wonder and prayer. I know she had a practice, but it was subtle and spacious enough that I know her company with me first and foremost. It didn't get between us. it was skillful and she used it through thick and thin and it taught me to do the same, but it never seemed she was doing it to achieve something or heal a sense of unworthiness.
My goal of late is a starting point of 2 hours each waking day with the phone turned off. More focus. Fewer distractions. Fewer, simpler tasks, and more time. One hour to read each night beside my kids. Doing less now to make more in the long run.
With that in mind I have to tell you, my 100 hour training Power of Prana is rescheduled to begin Fall 2018. [Sept 14,15,16 || Oct 5,6,7 || Oct 26,27,28 || Nov 16,17,18] Should you choose to join me for those astonishing 100 hours, they will be all the better for the delay, for the quiet I am crafting in my days.
(If you are interested in the training, email me. Let me know, so I can make the right decisions. The more people I tell of the change of dates, the more I run into disappointment - but I didn't know you were coming, loves. You have to tell me or sign up xxx)
Also, in my weekly classes, I will be offering 60/70 minutes of asana, then 10 minutes of rest and savasana, and 10 minutes of guided meditation. We need guidance on how to start to savor ourselves at rest more fully. This is at the heart of yoga practice but we have to choose to make them the heart of what we do.
Please join me. Yoga is "the intimacy with ourselves that remains when the chatter of our thoughts falls away." (Michael Stone's translation has always moved me.) This intimacy heals, holds, remembers, and restores us as nothing else can. I look forward to that time together.
What unimaginable choice can you make that makes for quiet and space and generosity in your company? I believe in you.
My love to you. Many thanks for keeping connected, Martha
ps. this newsletter was written in a little notebook with a dull pencil while sitting on a rock overlooking the river valley. can you hear the water going by?