I cried three times yesterday.
It was one of those days and I am learning to honor them.
The first tears came during yoga. I stayed for three classes. They came during a particularly challenging prana vinyasa. I felt them heating up behind my eyes and just breathed into it. Then they let loose (along with whatever samskara I hap tapped into) while I was in Urdhva Dhanurasana as my amazing teacher adjusted me, holding my shoulders, holding space as my heart spilled open.
The second round came when I realized that both of my girls were leaving for the day to go do fun teenage sister stuff. Which is great. Really. I love that they are so close. I love that they want to spend everyday together before Katie leaves for school in August. But my husband has been out of town for awhile, the girls have been busy with, you know, their lives and stuff and I’ve been home alone.
Some days I am alone and I am just alone. Other times I am alone and I am lonely.
Yesterday I was lonely.
It reminded me of when I was in college, before I had a roommate. We lived in apartments, mixed in with non-students so there wasn’t a dorm feeling at all. No easy way to meet people. I remember positioning myself on the couch in front of the window because I could see into the apartment diagonal from mine that housed some students so I hoped they could see into mine, see me alone in mine, take pity on me and invite me over.
That didn’t happen.
What did happen is that my girls and my “third” daughter came home from their fun sister day and invited me to a game night. WE sat around the dining room table playing Taboo, Bananagrams and Catch Phrase, laughing, talking and I remembered to just breathe it all in, enjoying, savoring every moment.
In Hatha this morning, the theme was “transitions.” That is what I am in the middle of. A huge life transition. Life is full of them, right? At least this is one that I am being eased into instead of forced into. At least I got an extra two years with Katie while she lived at home and took her general credit classes at the local community college. At least my girls and I sincerely like each other and enjoy spemnding time together. At least all those things.
But sometimes, like yesterday, the hole their absence will leave in my daily life almost takes my breath away.
That’s when I have to remember to breathe.
After all, I don’t want to be yanked kicking and screaming through this transition. I also don’t want to set up camp just outside the threshhold of this transition, stagnant and stuck.
I want to move mindfully, perhaps even gracefully through it, into whatever is waiting for me on the other side. Being with these tears, these feelings is part of that process.
The third set of tears came as we held our last mentor meeting online. There was a certain bittersweet quality to the meeting as we realized this particular way of connecting with each week was coming to an end, just as our time as apprentices was coming to a close. We wrote together once last time and everything I had been feeling all day got churned up by the prompt and was splilled out into more tears and a poem:
So many shades of blue
drizzling behind my eyes,
behind my skin.
Porcelain blue teacups of tears spilling
from my heart
as my girls have one foot out the door
ready to leave.
The loneliness is immense at times and
they haven’t even left yet.
But it’s coming.
In a blink it has come, this time of letting them go.
Wasn’t I just holding them in the soft glow of the nightlight,
gently rocking in the glider as if we were still one?
So, loneliness seeps in on days like today.
But also joy.
Vibrant peacock blue joy
that they are ready.
That they are ready to leave and
shine their own colors into the world,
spilling the rainbows of their awesome selves
out into the lives
they are meant to live.