During class one morning, a woman asked if I could define yoga in one word. I considered the array of descriptions, musings and translations. After a deep breath, I answered, “Awareness.”
The word-nerd in me smiled at the perfect match I’d made: Awareness. It’s recognizing the moment for what it is. It’s focusing on how we move. It’s aligning mind and body.
I was so satisfied with my response that I shared it with other classes, interspersing Awareness tidbits between poses. “Bring attention to the moment,” and “Witness each bend and reach,” plus “Notice the ‘aha’ moments.” So much we can do with awareness!
Early one day, my phone chirped its appointment-reminder tone. I checked it, checked the time and rushed to find footwear and brush my teeth. I didn’t remember making an 8:00 a.m. doctor appointment for that day, but that’s what had blinked at me from my screen.
I finished with the toothbrush and reached lip balm. Mid-swipe across my top lip, I paused. The doctor’s office didn’t open until 8:30. It dawned on me that I had tapped the wrong time (and day) into my calendar. At the same time, I started to realize that something tasted odd. I held out the lip balm and read the print. Grapefruit flavor. Really? How could I have possibly purchased grapefruit for my lips? What was I thinking?
Apparently I hadn’t been thinking. Ditto when I entered and saved 8:00 a.m. on my schedule (no right-thinking person with PD schedules anything before 10). So much for doing well with my awareness – I seemed to have rolled it up with my yoga mat.
In my next class, I decided to describe yoga using another word: Practice. Awareness, like yoga, isn’t something we do, it’s something we practice.