It is that kind of morning today. Last night, I sat down on the couch with my super-fancy day-planner. I bought it after watching a promotional video that made me cry. After mapping out a game plan for my week, I anticipated this morning being really focused.
But, Daisy dog is super hungry this morning. She wakes me up by rustling around on my bed. When I am unresponsive, she finally puts her paw directly on the center of my chest -- I both love and fear her intelligence. I know it is before 5:00 a.m. because the birds are not yet singing.
I feed her and provide a sluggish walk in the pre-pre-dawn hours. Upon its completion, my whole body spills back into bed. I don’t wake again until 7:10 a.m. LATE. I skip going to my normal spot for practice, and prop myself up against some bed pillows. My husband is oddly awake (still running on London time after his travels) and he offers to bring me my warm lemon water and a bowl of blueberries in bed. He can tell when I’m struggling. God bless him.
I muddle my way through a shower and drop Bobby off at work. I am still going to get back in time to tackle my carefully-planned goals. But, as I’m stopped at the red light, I look at my gauge and realize I’m running on empty. I head to the 7-11 just down the street. If I can pump this gas in 5 minutes, I’ll be golden. As the gas flows into my tank, I’m cleaning off a stunning combination of bird poop and pollen from my windshield. I suddenly feel really energized. Bumpy start to the morning, but no big deal. You got this girl! I wipe off the last of the dirty windshield water with the squeegee and plunk it in the bucket and turn to open my door. When I tug the handle, it thunks. It’s locked. Through the window, I can see my car keys sitting on the passenger seat along with my purse and cell phone. All I took to the pump was the debit card.
OK, no big deal. This is not my first rodeo with locking myself out of the car. There is a 90% chance one of the other four doors are unlocked because I have manual locks and I forget to lock my doors. Unfortunately (fortunately?), I have attended to locking my doors this week. OK, but the weather has been super nice after a week of rain, so maybe I’ve left the windows slightly open... NOPE.
I use the 7-11 phone to call Bobby. He assures me that he can come back to meet me via Uber with his set of car keys. His voice momentarily replaces the voice in my head.
In the minutes I am waiting for him to arrive, I berate myself for being so spacy. For inconveniencing Bobby. For mucking up my game plan.
Somewhere deep inside these minutes, however, there is a gift. In these minutes, I realize that I have forgotten.
While I have forgotten, something deep inside of me has known. It knew as it locked my door with my keys still inside. It knew that in embarrassment and helplessness, I would finally check in.
After dropping Bobby at work for a second time, I turn back around, pass the 7-11, and pull into the parking lot at Lake Artemesia.
I follow the tree-lined path to the lake and smell the season’s first honeysuckles. The lake opens up and along its path, red-winged blackbirds hop past and stare from nearby branches. Frogs sporadically croak watching the sun rise higher in the sky. An intersection on the path becomes a cathedral of cardinals; a half-dozen birds swoop in red flashes from tree to tree. Their chirps are as piercing as gospel.
This morning walking the edges of the lake, I feel myself waking up from my forgetfulness.
I am of THIS.
I will forget this simple truth thousands more times.
But I am comforted by this:
Over time, I have learned what my specific brand of forgetfulness feels like. I get better and better at spotting it all the time. All I have to do is tell myself: “You’ve seen the signs, and it’s time,” and I begin the process of remembering.
I pray to remember as many times as I forget.
This Sanskrit mantra is a wonderful reminder:
Purnam adah purnam idam
Purnat purnam udacyate
Purnasya purnam adaya purnam evavasisyate
That is whole; this is whole
From the whole, this whole came
Remove this whole from that whole, what remains is still whole
In this month’s recording, I’ll teach you the mantra. I hope you enjoy.
Hannah has been a student of yoga and meditation since 2003 and a practitioner of Ayurveda since 2013. She spent a decade teaching yoga classes and yoga teacher trainings throughout the metro-DC area. In August of 2019, she left full-time teaching to pursue a two-year Masters degree in Speech Language Pathology at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She intends to combine yoga, meditation, and Ayurveda into speech therapy sessions with those struggling to share their voices. While she does not currently teach regular classes, you can study with her online through Insight Timer.