The brightness from the newly fallen snow, lighting the world despite the darkness hovering above. As I drive to a two hour yoga class, I notice the trees, which are outlined in white, looking radiant with their winter look. Upon closer inspection, I realize differences in how trees are carrying the snow. The cottonwoods stand tall and strong, radiating beauty, confident. They look light and airy in this winter wonderland. Smaller trees and shrubs are thickly coated and bowing under the weight of the snow, heavy. I am reminded instantly of how I have been feeling the past few weeks. At work, I have been surrounded by people who are struggling with how to deal with what life gives them. And whether the changing from summer to fall and fall to winter is conscious for them, it feels like this change of seasons is also weighing on them...and in turn me.
At the end of my day on Thursday, the weight of other's misery was engulfing me. I was aware, yet could not find a way to let go and rise. This also caused my mind to find more to weigh myself down...missing daily connections with friends far away, questioning my work. Noticing the trees in this winter transition, I realized my perspective was causing this weight. I have been allowing what I can not control to worry me, stress me, weigh down on me. Instead, I could surrender to what is, bowing deeper, letting the snow fall from my limbs and allow me to rise, feeling radiant in the transition, feeling grateful for the change and the chance to slow down, reflect, be... I do not need to fight against other's struggles or take them on or feel responsible. At some point, the wind will blow and the snow spreads itself elsewhere, allowing branches to move and change. This is not something I can control or force. It will happen when it happens.
The latter half of the yoga class I attended was restorative poses. The teacher had us start with awareness of our bodies, then connect deeper to friends, then connect deeper with those we may not know well but there is a knowing with, then connect with our teachers, then finally deeper, with our true self. As sense of realizing that the body is a vehicle in which to carry connections from our lives, confirming to me, again, that what I need is within myself. Connecting within causes longing for others to soften, knowing I continue to connect with them, even if the physical body is not. After the class, I thanked the teacher, who gave me a hug, connecting. A reminder that connections with others for my physical self will happen in time, it can not be forced.