The first time I had really heard this expression “Show Up,” it was my yoga teacher that said it. We would arrive at the yoga studio and as everyone was finding their mat and sitting down to practice, she would say in a calm voice, “Just find your seat and when you settle in, ‘show up’ for your practice.
I started doing yoga about 12 weeks into my recovery journey. A friend from the program suggested it and then in one way or another pushed me into it. I had always said, “Oh yeah, I have always wanted to take some yoga…” never really meaning it. I mean when I drink and spout off anything like that sounds like I actually CARE about doing something actually healthy. I am glad my friend called up the studio after he said, “I’ll go too, I could use a class myself.”
There we were driving to yoga in the same car, it all happened so seamlessly, it obviously was inspired by some divine universal energy, Higher Power, whatever – but I can honestly say that taking that yoga class was a turning point for me.
What Yoga Taught Me
Yoga taught me how to STOP. I learned how to stop because my yoga teacher would put little notes on her bulletin board that were simple instructions that every week I could say, “Sure, I could try that.” Sometimes I would remember and sometimes I wouldn’t but at least I knew to try. I realize part of this “thawing out” was due just to the mere temperament of my yoga teacher, I believe she was put into my life when I was ready to listen. And in her quiet way she helped me learn that I had lots of spinning going on in my head. The slow ease of yoga gave me something else to concentrate on while I was able to learn how to slow down the spinning. Once the spinning slowed, then I could actually see the things that were spinning.
Seeing the Spin
My mind, just like a washing machine- as my head (clothes) spun, it was a blur of color and articles, it is impossible to see what is spinning while I am in the SPIN cycle. Seeing that I was spinning was a revelation. And once I figured that out, it made a big difference.
Spinning For Years
As I have mentioned in this blog, the spin started slowly years ago. As my life and my drinking progressed, the spin accelerated. I lost sight of the individual things that were there and drinking helped me numb the confusion the spinning caused. Then I didn’t feel the need to figure things out.
Stopping the Spin
For me, “SHOWING UP ” is merely the process of slowing down the spin and showing up to what is there to see for what it is and not what my mind has spun it up to be. Once I have things separated out a little, I have a better sense of reality. When I am at yoga or at a meeting, it is that magic of feeling safe, catching my breath so I can figure out what is real and what is just the “SPIN.”