April 9, 2014

This Is Why I Practice. ~ Kali Kirkendall

Photo: Clint Cook / Pixoto

My eyes glaze and my head aches.

I feel the tension pulsing on my third eye.

My mind spins as the locked words catch on my still tongue, behind my closed lips. I look around. I look within. I realize my body’s distance. I realize it has become a foreign land.

Are these hands writing even mine? I explicitly ask my arm to carry out the movements. I feel the need to thank them, kindly. I am unknown, here especially, and it seems to grow with each passing hour. Through the disconnect, I am unknown even to myself. I proceed through the day. Actions follow actions. I guard my skin against the sun, my body against the heat.

Wake, walk, water, food. I check the basics off one by one.

My surroundings make up a blurred audio of foreign tongue, fans and car wheels on cobblestone. My head…full of thoughts. Amazed at how quickly we adapted to being alone in so much company.

I close my computer and with a heavy heart realize others do not do the same. We interact more yet communicate less in our world of IM’ing and wall posting, of hash tagging and uploading. Yet I open my mouth, the words still catch in my throat.

Too much time living in my own mind.

I know what to do.

I unroll my mat. I breathe as I place one foot…and then the other…slowly onto the floor. My eyes glaze as my lids hang heavy. My breath deepens and my chest, slowly, rises and falls to its rhythm. My body, once again, becomes my home. My breath becomes my force. My mind quiets, the sounds disappear into the flow of ujjayi. The thoughts dissipate. The tension releases. The sweat drips.

I feel my strength. It builds as the energy moves through my body; I realize the ease of which each movement is carried out. I have entered the flow. I have entered into the dance. My breath leads the body and my mind, quietly focused and still. I am lighter as I move to the body’s simple guided wisdom. It continues, it creates, it is patient, and time ceases to exist. Until I stop. I allow the stillness to settle in.

The breath becomes the only movement. My mind, calm, still and alert. I am listening now, rather than the incessant chatter of a muted voice. I release. I am supported.

I slowly rise. I bow. I smile.

I am light. I am inspired. I see clearly.

My head no longer is aching. I no longer ask my whole being to reside there. My eyes are able to focus, to see. My body is complete. Full and empty simultaneously. Satisfied. Content.

This is why I practice.

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Apprentice Editor: Marcee Murray King/Editor: Catherine Monkman

Photo: Clint Cook/Pixoto

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