Even though I’ve been practicing for more than 10 years, I still struggle with bakasana (crow pose) more than any other. It’s not that I can’t do it, but rather that I just never feel confident enough to fully submit to this balancing pose: too fresh in my mind are the memories of landing squarely on my face and explaining the bruised cheekbone at work the next day.
After tackling the pose this evening, I reminded myself that it’s not just OK to fall sometimes – it’s important, even when it hurts. Lying quietly on my mat in savasana, I felt my eyes snap open as I realized bakasana is more than a yoga pose: it’s a reflection of so many things in my life.
I’m afraid of falling.
I’m afraid of failing.
I’m afraid of hearing no, not getting the job or the promotion or the guy.
I’m afraid of challenging the status quo, even when leaving that comfort zone is sure to have nothing but positive impact on my life.
Sitting at the front of the room yesterday at BlogJam I listed to a woman I love and admire talk about the importance of asking for what you want. It was inspiring and I know I wasn’t the only person in the room who felt Erica was speaking directly to me.
As I finished my nightly yoga practice this evening, I decided to freestyle for 10 minutes before I spent quiet time in savasana and released the day. Instead of concentrating on core strengthening, I decided to do a few handstands, a headstand, a downward-dog twist and finally, several moments spent practicing bakasana (and its variations).
Lifting my toes off the floor I felt trepidation – what if I fell again? – and then, I felt the amazing release of fear as the sensation of strength and balance washed over me… and then the weight of F’s hand as he came in to ask about popcorn and whether I’d make some.
And if I can talk about popcorn and balance in that pose, I can balance just about anything.