Listening to women so soon after they give birth, it sounds like their story has a life of its own, moving through their bodies like a runaway train with seemingly nowhere to go. However, if we listen well, it can direct us to places inside that require more of our attention. They're the places that we continue to return to over and over again, the knots that need to be untied so that we can integrate our experience and have it be inside us more like a well tuned conductor, guiding our direction to the magical tune within us that helps us to find just the right balance of the two wings of yoga, surrender and effort.
I could hear, clearly were our lovely Liz Sullivan's train directed her. It was when she first arrived at the hospital, very tired from putting everything she had into laboring for hours at home, she lost it, allowing herself the sobs and cries that reflected how she felt. It was the surrender wing, the letting go, the giving ourselves over to our innocence; the unedited, strong, fighting youthful spirit that is willing to do and be anything. It's the place where for me personally, now, I try so hard to go, over and over again, like a laboring woman, I sit, I breathe, and I wait for the opening.
So often immediately following these precious, unbridled moments, space is somehow created within us and quick, effortless movement prevails. My writing just flows and it feels as strong and joyful as the moment I found the perfect balance between push and paddle to keep myself a float on top of the water, despite the hours of effort required in pursuit of my goal. For Liz, her "Laney" came so quickly that she wished that she would have been forewarned of such drastic,sharp unexpected movement, a concern hardly heard of in labor, and one that will serve her well, especially if she is willing to continue to explore, reflect, and articulate. Her baby's sharp, drastic movement downward followed by birth - the release, it's the culminating moment of transformation, grounded down deeply by a force beyond our will, only to be lifted higher upward for lighter, more joyful movement.
Liz certainly has strengthened well the effort wing of yoga and knows it well. She is a bright, articulate, beautiful, hard working woman that put forth great effort in preparing for labor. My blessing for her is that she continually find her way back to her mat to fine tune what she learned through her experience, the wing harder to know, that of letting go.