Finding Your Happy Place...
Happiness. I realized yesterday that it's actually not a place; it's a moment in time where you let go of all expectations and enjoy what's there right in front of you. For me falling into my daughter's arms made me happy as hell. What brings you joy? Even just taking a few moments throughout the day to check in with yourself with how your energy is reacting to the present moment- how do you feel?
The drive to the shore was filled with moments of annoyance and anger, because I missed my exit and went 20 minutes out of the way. Well those feelings quickly passed and then on the way home a car almost veered into my lane and thankfully my horn and brakes worked, and that brought me a feeling of anxiety and fear; but that too passed. That's the thing with life it's all these moments and emotions that ride us through the day and luckily we are blessed with a few happy ones to carry us through even when things don't go as planned. When the car almost hit us, I had this feeling of tightness come throughout my whole body and I took my awareness there (faced that bitch, like I was fearless), not ignoring or pushing it away, but just allowing it to run its course; with me breathing through it and honoring a job well done. See this is a great example how the fight or flight response does come in handy. I can tell you this, years ago without yoga in my life, it would have taken me forever to wind down from that anxiety ride.
It's not always rainbows and sunshine (don't we wish), so embracing the good with the bad is what life is all about. I remember learning about Santosha in my yoga training. SANTONSHA is contentment. It's not about this quest for the perfect life of happiness, it's about surrendering to loving every aspect of this wild and crazy life that we all lead. Or maybe it's just me. Nah.
I think it may be a dangerous thing to "expect" a certain thing, person, or place to make you happy. I'd love to say to you that my happy place is ALWAYS my mat and to be honest it's not. My mat is sometimes filled with, anger, anxiety, jealousy, hate, sadness and I think you get the point, I could go on. Thing is I do feel happy most of the time on my mat and all the time feel content. Content with what is and what might be. That's the beauty of studying yoga philosophy, you are given the permission to love life just as it is. It's ok if it's not perfect and it may never be, I don't even think that exists.
I came to this conclusion yesterday at the beach while we were just playing around in handstands practice, that I fell in love with the moment of just being. I found my Santosha there in my daughter's arms, not because I held the handstand, but because we were able to laugh at each other, having me fall into her like a wild woman. I was there present, not caring about what anyone thought, breathing, enjoying time with family, and just being able to LOVE every minute of what is.