Tuesday morning, I woke up, but barely. I was heavy all over. It has been raining for weeks in Austin, and this morning was particularly dark and wet. My body and my mind moved slowly and my heart felt heavy, too. The night before I watched a movie and I woke thinking about it. It made me feel so sad.

I went through my morning yoga practice but didn’t really mean it. Some days are like that. When I was finally at the end, I thought about the story of the woman in the movie who had suffered so much. I thought about women throughout history who have suffered in similar ways, and I started to cry. Sometimes the weight of these things feels overwhelming.

But then something happened. Peace came over me. It wasn’t just peace, it felt like God was there with me and all this suffering that was so painful a moment before shifted and I wasn’t holding it alone. This happened at the exact moment that the air conditioner kicked on in my practice space, and the cool air felt so good, I wondered if i had it wrong and it wasn’t god I was feeling.  Maybe I was just hot. For a moment, I considered going with the air conditioner explanation, but then I remembered that I have an old habit I have of denying anything spiritual. I took a few deep breaths, felt my body cool off, and I noticed that the relief was still with me. So was the feeling of peace.


from ‘Philomena’, the 2013 film starring Judy Dench and Steve Coogan

2 thoughts on “Respite

  1. Robyn

    Oh! That movie is so heartbreaking – I agree! How well I know that overwhelming feeling of sadness about how women have suffered through the millennia. Many, many tears have been shed on that one. And probably will be again and again. I think as our minds settle and we can see things more clearly, one of the biggest things we begin to see is just how much suffering is all around us. It’s so painful! Then we realize that this terrible suffering isn’t even necessary….oh my…even MORE pain! Being aware and alive means being brave enough to feel this pain – it takes a lot of courage to be a bodhisattva. But, fortunately, we have each other when it feels like too much : ) XOXOX

    1. Amanda Post author

      I was talking to Dave about this place in my practice… where I feel so aware of all the shitty stuff that goes on/ has gone on/ will go on. It sits there on the same bench with the profound beauty and peace and love. Yoga used to be a way that I didn’t feel the suffering so much, but now it has become a way to feel it and be with it without it totally taking me down. I’m grateful for yoga practice but I’m even more glad that we have each other along the way. XOXO


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