I have been experiencing a range of emotions these past few days.
I am unsettled. I feel restless.
This emotional and now bodily response began when my music partner and I parted ways late morning this past Thursday. We had begun to unveil the discovery that our individual souls’ needs for work and artistic creation were vastly different than either of us had fully realized or appreciated prior to moving into a time of working together.
I am not a person who enjoys limbo.
To work together in proximity required intention, along with great transition and physical and emotional upheaval.
I left my job at a local bookstore. My partner left his entire life on the east coast to drive to Arizona.
And suddenly, we were saying goodbye.
Were we breaking up? It kind of felt like it, but I was not certain. All that I knew was that each of our souls deserved to be honored.
In my life, I have learned to acquiesce to the needs of others. I have had difficulty saying no to any request that I know will make another person happy or will potentially encourage a person to “like me.” In attempting to bring joy to another person, I have learned to ignore my own requirements for a balanced existence. Over time, this propensity became so engrained that I literally had no idea what it was that I even needed to experience balance and happiness.
I spent a dark winter in Alaska beginning to peel back the layers of cultural expectations and fear of external judgment to find an inner voice that was in desperate need of rekindling. I cannot say that I have any desire to repeat that winter, but I came through the storm to a place of greater clarity. With that clarity came the realization that it takes regular intention to maintain healthy boundaries to live in a way that is sustainable for me. It is very easy for me to fall back into established patterns of enabling and self-sacrifice.
So when my partner and I began to discover that our individual needs were quite different, I was felt myself at a loss for how to proceed in a way that allowed me to honor his needs without losing my own self.
Hours passed, and I still had no idea what path I was meant to take.
This morning, I dawdled through my morning routine in preparation for the continuation of a seventh month journey through yoga intensive studies. I always feel like I have so much time before I need to leave, when suddenly departure time has come and gone and I find myself trying frantically to gather my belongings, coffee, and partially eaten breakfast and get into my car to leave.
Open the car door, put my plate on top of the car, jostle my coffee mug and spill coffee down my front. Run back to the house, clean coffee off of the outside of my mug and the front of my shirt and pants by splashing water onto the damp spots.
Back to the car. Place travel mug safely into the drink space in the console. Is there still coffee on the bottom? Should I try to clean it? No time. Back out of the driveway. Wave to my partner. Drive to training.
I arrived only a few minutes late and struggled to join my nine yogi companions in a manner devoid of anything remotely resembling grace. Together, we traveled on a road that led out of town and toward rolling hills and rocking outcroppings, where ravens floated above us.
Arriving at now familiar environs, we walked into a room dimly lit by candles and sunlight filtering in through several windows. I sat on a foam roller to try to avoid sending my back into recurrent muscle spasm.
Our teacher welcomed us and followed with the words, “Mercury is in retrograde. Do any of you know what this means?”
“Mercury is moving backwards?” one person ventured.
“Mercury appears to be moving backwards,” was the answer.
When Mercury is in retrograde, the universe is in flux. We are scattered and accident prone, restless and uncomfortable. We may find ourselves beating our heads against the wall trying to accomplish something that just is not working.
When Mercury is in retrograde is not a good time to begin new projects.
Huh, I mused out loud.
From across the room, I was met with knowing smiles. Pieces were falling into place. I began to understand that there was nothing I needed to force in this moment. I had only to be patient and let the mercurial winds pass.
All will be revealed.