In yoga, a person’s mental and emotional fortitude is referred to as a container.
When your container is fancy-pants tupperware party strength, you can handle anything. You’re mindful. You have perspective. Life happens and your safety bar is down, your hands and arms are inside the coaster, and you will rock every loop-de-loop. (Your container must be this big to ride the ride. Heh.)
When your container is an over-used plastic strawberry carton found at the bottom of recycling, you’re in a bit of trouble.
The latter was the state of my container the last two weeks; dilapidated, leaking, and expired.
Every part of my day was reactive, events passed in a blaze of hot colors and searing emotions I couldn’t watch. The grocery store was my private hell, every traffic light was out to get me, conversations either bored or irritated me. Even my yoga practice became something to endure, something to get through, while I kept treading water.
I visited my parents over the holiday and what was left of my container broke. It completely disintegrated into the puddle I became.
I’m trying not to be ashamed of the complete meltdown(s) I had. I would tell any student it is part of the processes; using the tapas fire to bake a stronger container. A forging and a re-kilning.
I did not feel cleansed or reborn and only the disheveled state of my hair resembled a phoenix rising.
I only felt emotionally hung over. Numb, lethargic, empty.
So I began to fill my container with good.
I sat outside on my parent’s deck in the early dawn hours, overlooking the trees, the flowers, the mountains, and the horses as the birds sang.
I was soothed by the ethereal dance of the campfire and hypnotized by the vast stars in the company of my family and dogs.
I picked blueberries with my sweet grandmother feeling the sun on my back and hearing the gentle hum of bees and the plop of the berries into the bucket.
I felt the permanence of impermanence with my feet in soft garden dirt.
I slipped back into the sensation of complete connection between myself and the world.
Each day I feel less fragile. The edges of the world have smoothed and I have space to breathe again.
And I keep picking up all the good, hearing the gentle plop as it hits my fortified container.