This isn't the first time I've said this.
And no, don't get excited, this isn't for motocross.
Or anything else that might make me seem cool.
I need a helmet.
And for the record, they don't make one.
Here's the deal. I have a goal.
I want to be able to do a handstand.
Without a wall.
Like. As in. Holding myself in perfect balance. Upside down.
I realize that I could have a perfectly satisfying life without ever accomplishing this mission.
I could probably go for months. Maybe even years without the need for this talent.
The skill is actually pretty useless in real life.
But I still want to do it.
I've been practicing yoga for about 14 years.
Handstands come up every-so-often.
And I've always made either a half-assed attempt.
(Picture downward dog pose and add a flailing donkey kick.)
Or I've use a wall.
(Picture downward dog pose with a really fast flailing donkey kick that propels me until I hit a wall. Hard. And then I fall back down.)
Shut up. It's pretty.
Ok. So... my yoga teacher doesn't really like either of these techniques.
He actually puts his hands on the floor and his two feet seriously levitate into the air.
I'm pretty sure his hands aren't even touching the ground.
He's just hovering. Upside down.
Ok not really.
But his handstands are bad ass.
And I want to be bad ass too.
That's when I realized that I had never even considered that I would do a handstand.
This is what handstand used to sound like in my mind: Yah yah yah... I know ... blah blah-donkey-kick-blah. Let's move on.
This is what it sounds like now: Woah. I might really be able to do this. I'm going to practice. I'm going to get better.
This makes a lot sense - since I actually teach this shit. I teach that life is a practice. That happiness is a practice. That it's a skill that you can learn. And that you actually have tobelieve that you will do something before you will do it.
Kinda like handstand.
If you give a flailing-donkey-kick-attempt at a good life. That's about what you'll get. A donkeyish life. (I know. Profound right?)
You actually have to commit. Practice. And risk falling. Over and over.
It's a fine concept. I highly suggest it.
So over the past few months - I've been practicing. For reals.
And after about 100 full-assed attempts - I've started to kick up with serenity.
And then come down.
There's not really balance yet. But it's somewhat graceful. I'm getting better. And all of a sudden a handstand seems within my reach.
Which takes me to yesterday.
I'm going through my practice.
And the teacher says.
Kick up to handstand.
And I did.
And I stayed.
And I was still up there.
And my feet were together.
I totally freaked out.
I felt like I was going to fall.
And not in a good way.
I thought about leaning to the right.
But there is a wall of frail old windows that I really wasn't looking forward to plummeting through.
I thought about rolling into a somersault.
But my beautiful MacBook Pro would be in the path of destruction.
(No silly. I wasn't doing email from my mat. I was taking an online class. Yogaglo.com. Check them out. You're welcome.)
So I did the only thing logical.
I dropped on my head.
Completely missing my yoga mat.
Spanish tile. Meet Meadow's skull.
This is what I learned... (Besides the fact that the health of my computer takes priority over the well-being of my noggin. Perhaps something worth looking into.)
Falling doesn't kill me.
It hurt. Don't get me wrong.
I've got a helluva lump on my head and a big bruise on my hip. But I'm alive.
All those flailing donkey kicks were preventing me from this moment. Knowing that I can take a risk.
And that I might fall.
And that falling hurts.
And that after I fall.
I can get back up.
Put on my helmet.
And try again.
We can allow the fear of failure to stop us.
We can allow the pain of falling to stop us.
But you and I both know.
We're better than that.