As I walked the six stories alone I thought to myself, “Do I really want to do this?”
Well, I was thinking how I would like to say I did it, but can I do it? Not fully sure of myself, I continued on with no one passing me, only those in front of me on their way to a different path. That is how it started.
The six stories of wooden stairs didn’t feel too daunting. What awaited me at the top was a different story. Below, Geoffrey and Quinn watched on with support, anticipation, and laughter at my actions and waves; they knew I was scared!
I was acting like it wasn’t all so bad. Though, years ago, I had told myself I would never do such a thing.
It’s a 6 story drop. That’s 250 feet. That’s my heart in my throat and my gut in my chest kind of drop. Should I really be saying the word ‘drop’? It was a fun little slide! Ah, yes, that’s better I told myself.
Just a little water slide, I got this!
I don’t know if I got this.
When was the last time fear and/or doubt was gripping you? What did it feel like? What was the bodily experience of that moment? What were your thoughts? Did this fear arise from your own choices or was it fear that came from an unexpected outside entity or circumstance? What can you remember, if anything, helping you in that moment? Did anyone support you?
Take a moment with that prompt. Feel free to set this blog aside and then come back.
Walking up those wooden stairs alone was useful for me. I started to focus on my breath and each physical step in my body, embodiment. And yet, alone wasn’t my experience at the top.
Kareem, a very kind man who was managing the Screaming Hyena and Sahara Sidewinders, smiled as he watched me hesitate. He could easily tell I was really scared. He was also completely supportive and patient. I took my time looking over the fence, down at the rushing water that splashed into the base where everything landed eventually. Water catching water, catching my heart beats.
I am grateful I could take my time; size up the situation, not see anyone do it before I would go, no one behind me, and the spaciousness to ground and get pumped up!
How do you connect to your inner peace in times of great storms? What keeps/gets you grounded? What resources do you evoke in moments of challenge? What draws up your courage? What do you do, think, or make happen in order to support yourself to take a risk you want to take?
Again, take your time with one, or any, of these prompts. I find that feeling into these prompts, letting each sink into my psyche and body, allows me to connect to the qualities that I want to carry with me always. This practice has been proven to support people in times of immediacy and urgency.
This is also why when we practice on the mat, we are practicing for those moments that will happen off the mat. Just because we are supposedly safer, calmer, and more centered on the mat, does not lessen the potency of what effects the practice WILL have for us off the mat.
All of our practices become IMPORTANT and ESSENTIAL to the life we wish to live! Nothing is wasted in our practices, everything is gained and beautifully transformed! Trust this!
“I got this!” My inner dialogue began to shift from fear to power! I waved down to Quinn and Geoffrey (for the third time, lol!). My perceptions shifted from death defying water drop to fun kids water slide that I can do!
*Hint: Change of perspective can be another source of inner strength. Reframing can be a tool for empowerment and transformation.
And, I wasn’t alone. I had Quinn, Geoffrey, and now Kareem. I knew I had Source on my side too! The entire water park before me, I got in the water of the slide, crossed my legs, and arms behind my head, as Kareem has instructed for my safety and best ride possible! Everything was READY TO GO!
“Oh shit!” my brain suddenly said. What’s crazy is, you have to wiggle yourself out off the top edge of the waterslide in order to drop in and drop down!
I could get up, turn back, and get out! Risky, but I could do it. Ah shit…
Then more support from behind. Another man who entered the line for the ride said, “Just count to three and go.” He was smiling, meant well, and his energy was supportive. I am not sure that would help me in any other situation, however, in this situation, at this time, it did. I just had to go. To just do it.
What do you do to nudge yourself over the edge to just do the thing!? What do you let go of in order to move forward? What do you embody? What mantra, song, affirmation pumps in your mind? What else helps? How are you with the fear, or are you, in that moment(s)? What do you need in that moment?
1, 2, 3!…..
Holy Shit! Some sound came from me, but I can’t recall. All I can say is I was breathing, LMAO! At least there was that! I was alive, sailing, breathing, falling and SMILING my ass off!
And just like that it was over!
I stood up and I was cheering and I turned around and pumped my chest, Celine Dion style, waving a “rock on” sign back up to Kareem and thanking him and the other man. I howled as if I had just won the Super Bowl! The world was mine and I was the world and all was on fire! I was on fire!
I imagine this is what a rock star feels like with an entire colosseum screaming their name and cheering them on!
How do you celebrate? Any moment!? Do you allow yourself to celebrate? Why or why not? How was celebrating taught to you growing up; how was it exemplified by those around you? Where you allowed to get loud and express your excitement, love, happiness?
Do it NOW!! Get up! Pump your chest like Celine Dion! Howl! Celebrate the latest and greatest thing you have done that you are proud of; IT DOEDS NOT MATTER HOW BIG OR SMALL, just do it! Get up!! Send me a picture of you celebrating!
*Listen to Geoffrey’s commentary while waiting for me to just do it! lol! And Quinns sweet voice!
When I walked out of the water others wanted to know how it was. I was more than willing to share! And, I was more than ready to tell them that they, too, could do it!
“It wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be” I began to hear myself say.
And there it is. The learning and the growth.
When we live through an event, whether self-imposed or life hands it to us, we grow. In this way, the lived experiences we have become tools and new resources from which we can draw even more wisdom, courage, and belief in ourself that we can weather any storm.
Think back to something difficult you have lived through. Perhaps a death of a loved one; maybe a terrifying water slide; a big shift at work; loss of a friendship; a broken heart; maybe you were the one who hurt someone else.
What did that moment in your life feel like? What was going on at the time? Who were you at the time?
What did you do? How did you weather the storm? Who was there? What actions did you take? What actions did you not take?
Most importantly, what did you learn from the experience? What did it teach you? How did it change you? What did you discover about yourself?
What positive attribute about yourself stands out when you think back to that experience? Was it your courage? Your compassion? Trusting your intuition? Was it your ability to just show up? Was it your ability to listen?
Let that positive attribute settle in. Right now, breathe, and get close to it.
Begin to let the story go, let it disappear, as you focus upon this positive characteristic about yourself. Where does this essence of you live most in your body? Place your hands there now, if you like. What sensations in your body are present as you feel more deeply into this quality you possess?
Continue to repeat the quality and the words in your mind’s eye. Use your name. Example:
“I, (put your name here), am (put the quality here).” Repeat, repeat, repeat.
What does this do? It connects you closer to your innate goodness. My topic for next week.
Notice how you feel now. Is that inner peace and place of grounding more accessible? Hopefully so!
How will you remember this all moving forward?
Take a breath here, now. You’ve shifted/changed. Take time to acknowledge that too.
I took a lot of deep breaths after that plunge! And one thing I remembered is that when we’ve lived through an experience the next time it happens it doesn’t feel or seem the same because we, too, have changed.
Did I do the water slide again? You betcha!! I was so empowered I did every other water slide I could do alone! It was incredible!
Take a deep breath, say your affirmation, and go out there today. Do the thing today, if it is the day for you! Take your time. See how you are supported. Draw from your own inner resources for self-support. Listen to that rock star music! Get pumped up and ground deep down.
You got this!
And I got you. I believe in you.
Breathe and Believe.