I have been in Houston helping my Mom pack up the house. Going through years of paperwork, boxes strewn about, the space is beginning to look sparse even as the memories remain.
The house is a container for so many experiences, all the way back to when Herb & I got married in 1997, to giving birth to my first baby girl, to the days immediately after when my Dad was diagnosed with cancer, to 18 months later when he passed away at home. So many images, some vivid, some blurry, some sweet, some still raw. Even as old memories drift away even further, it’s grounding to know that new ones are still being created as Sonia and Sophia run around the house.
The girls and I spent a few minutes in the morning meditating overlooking the garden. The garden where my Dad spent a lot of his time. I believe it may have been his way of being connected to something beyond what the physical world could provide. He wasn’t religious, but the garden, I believe, was his spiritual abode.
I read through some of his old papers. Performance reviews at work, descriptions of him in his college year book. I came across his application for disability, when he knew he would no longer continue to work.
One question read “Are you receiving or eligible to receive pension benefits”. My dad answered, “In future, upon death”. I can’t imagine how it felt to go through those 18 months knowing afterlife was coming. Seeing your kids, your spouse, your friends, your first grandchild, while knowing the second was on the way.
All I know is that even thinking about it makes my throat feel tight, my forehead heavy, my heart as if it could come apart.
We all know death is in our future, but what if we knew it was in our near future, just months away. What would have mattered? What might have been done differently?
It’s funny how we so easily cling to life, when life can so easily slip out of our hands. Everything can change in just moments. Life can come, life can go, as it should. The memories and the history make us who we are today. But what we choose today will cultivate our tomorrow.
I am glad to have had some time and space to reminisce about the past. But I hope to remain present to today more than anything. I hope to take it in for all that is good, all that is bad, and really the full spectrum in between.
Edited by Hayley Samuelson
Sheila Singh is inspired by many traditions of yoga and sees her yoga mat as a place for her to let go and drop into her body and mind and ultimately open into spirit. She hopes to hold a space for students to do the same. Sheila views the practice as a mindful dance between breath, movement and drishti. Sheila loves that yoga is truly a philosophy on how to lead your life with a greater sense of awareness and intention. It goes beyond the physical practice and helps to guide practitioners in every aspect of life. For Sheila, her yoga practice has enabled her to remain true to herself and embody a deep sense of awareness, acceptance and love through everything that life brings her way.Most importantly Sheila continues to be a student and is inspired by the wonderful community of teachers in Austin. When she is not practicing yoga, Sheila loves spending time with her two girls, her husband and beautiful circle of friends. www.sheilasingh.com
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The 4 Stages of a Good Divorce. A Letter to my Children: You do not come from a Broken Home. These People are Rare Gems—Keep Them, Fight for Them, don’t Give Up on Them. Mom, can I Call her Mom, Too? Jon Stewart makes first appearance since retiring—”it’s not your country.” Waylon shares 10 transformingly beautiful Quotes about Love. My Marriage had to End—for my Life to Begin. Why your Yoga Goals are (Probably) Irrelevant, if not Downright Dangerous. The Day I Stopped Running. Dear Woman in the White Car at Margaritas Mexican Grill in West Memphis, Arkansas on July 15th, 2012.