Tuesday, February 11, 2020

Journey into Darkness

Well, it’s been a long haul, a head and body trip that took me to Hell and back. Hard to believe it only took two weeks and some odd days. I say some odd days because I know I still have a horde of butterflies flapping their wings in my belly.

All too late, I discovered landslide had its roots in an ill composed intention. At the end of December, I was so proud of my body for holding out the stress and strain of the stage performances and regular yoga classes, I promised it a three-week rest as a reward, a time of doing nothing, a time to allow it to recuperate.

Wrong wording, I realized later. The Universe took me literally.

 I thought I would give my self some time to read and write, perhaps take an outing with my husband to Dresden or Rothenburg, a few walks in the English Garden, a leisurely bought of window shopping here in our neighborhood.

Obviously not what my body understood who, it seems, wanted full and total rest: no long meditation sessions, regenerative yoga on the living room rug, no strolls or sightseeing tours. A bacterial infection took hold in my throat. Within days, I was so sick, I couldn’t even make it to the corner for groceries. (Thank God, Gusch waited two weeks before he contracted the same illness.)

The only thing I was capable of doing, and that in grand style, was to fall victim to my thoughts. Not those idle thoughts that wonder what I’ll cook for dinner, watch on TV, what I think about the book I’m reading. This turned out to be hand to hand combat with my worst fears ever: the darkest, most hopeless of notions of desolation and abandonment.  Another ‘Dark Night of the Soul’ encounter of the third kind. Hideous shit that makes me think anything, even death, would be preferable.

Thank God I had my husband who listened patiently to my ravings, offered advice and understanding, vowed his eternal love. (Thank God he has trouble remembering things, even two minutes after they happen, or we both would have ended as blithering idiots in 2 days.)

My dark night ravaged my mind for two weeks. (For those who believe that time speeds up when you get older: that may be true when the sun is shining, and everything is coming up roses, when you have a new project that needs your undivided attention, when you’re deeply engrossed in a new book; THOSE were NOT happening. Believe me. I was so under the weather, I couldn’t imagine I would ever recover enough to start teaching again.  It was the longest period of my life. Think: puberty multiplied by 3,000!)

 Now that I am finally able to get my nose out of water again,  I would like to share a few of the things I went through, hoping you might gain from my experience, and your road will not be so bumpy.

Stay tuned.

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