I won the battle over my apprehension last week and took this handsome guy on a long trail ride across the road from my house. I was uneasy because when my horse gets uncomfortable, he takes off. We had to cross a busy street and then enter a new-to-us park, potentially sharing the trail with mountain bikers who don’t always realize they terrify most horses.
But I was tired of being worried, and it was what my dad would have described as a “bluebird day”–sunny and the perfect temperature–so off we went. The day turned out to be quite blue-birdy because Rio walked across the busy road like a champ, and we saw only two bikers, both of whom had the good sense to pull off the trail and let us pass. Sitting low in the saddle and letting my horse stride down miles of open trail, I discovered a most glorious sensation–the feeling of being both held and free.
That’s the vibration I want us all to be in, all the time. And we can. We just have to remember.
But what are we remembering? What does it mean to be held and free? To me, it’s a deep inner-knowingness that whatever is happening at any given moment holds the opportunity for me to learn and grow. That the Universe is conspiring for my highest good, even when life is confusing. And when I can trust that this is true, I experience a sort of release. My mind settles down, my body regulates itself and feels more grounded, and often I can feel an expansiveness to my energy. Just like I did on the trail with my horse.
Yet, daily life often distracts us from feeling held and free. One of the ways I’ve been trying to counteract this is to notice every time I become ungrounded. Since I’ve set that intention, I’ve been surprised how often it happens in the space of a day! Even things like the buzz of my phone when a text comes in can be slightly jarring.
So, when something uproots me, I take an intentional deep breath, then use the mental image of a tree root to connect my energy to the center of the earth. If you are one of my yoga students or clients, you are probably familiar with the process. If not, feel free ask me how. When I ground my energy, I remember I am safe, I am held, and all is well in that moment.
A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about the suffering in the world. And, lately, I’ve been shown a lot of local suffering. Friends, students and clients who are experiencing deep grief, serious illness, threats to financial security or unexplained sadness. What I am also “seeing” in my work are images of a flowing presence wrapping wings of love around those who are hurting. You might call it an angel, a manifestation of love, or the Divine Mother, but whatever it is, this energy comes through over and over again to remind us that we are held in unwavering love.
This understanding that we are held in love by something greater than our humanness sets me free. I don’t have to earn it. I simply have to remember it. So, I didn’t need to be nervous about crossing that busy road into an unknown trail system with a horse who likes to run. Once I remembered to trust, all was well. Better than that, it was exhilarating.