11 February 2011

Breathe, and Smile

My first day in San Marcos de la Laguna, Guatemala, was filled with tears, but so much enlightenment. I went to a spiritual talk with Bill. "What are you talking about?" I asked when he mentioned he was doing a teaching.

He shrugged his shoulders. "Whatever I feel like. I don't like picking a topic because then I'll be stuck with it."

And we weren't stuck with a topic. We discussed love and pain and death and giving yourself and how to spread positive energy and holding onto negativity and positivity and what to do with your energy. I can't really explain it very well because it is an experience, not something you can write about.

But one thing that did happen was I found my unhappiness suffocating, oppressive. We started to do an exercise, "Breathe and smile..." I found I couldn't smile. We were told to search for something that could make us smile if we couldn't...

Though I found the exercise impossible (tears were commonplace for me then), I searched in my memory...I remembered riding my bike across the playa at Burning Man, top speed, with total joy...doing the triathlon at Burning Man...slip and slide at Burning Man...climbing that crazy slide at BM...winning the 50k at BM...so many beautiful memories in that one place. But I needed to not think of that...

And a few other memories popped into my head. Like driving to Florida, pulling my hair into pigtails, too much lipsticks, drive faster, I'm freeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee from all the corporate stiff constrants. And that birthday a few years ago, where I said, "Oh, I'll just run down the beach," and V watched me run, my promised run of ten or twenty minutes turning into an hour and a half in my teeny tiny Brazilian bikini on my birthday...

And those beautiful memories...those are what will sustain me when things suck. When a healer was trying to help me with my hand, and all I could feel was PAIN, I clung to those memories, to thinking of how amazing I felt, so free, running up the sand dunes, running past the lifeguards with my big smile and not much else -- and my true self.

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