A Winter Story

As I sit huddled under a blanket and reading a book, I look out the window at the piles of snow that have collected around the house and up pops a memory from somewhere deep within. When I was in my teens, I had an evening job at the mall…B.Dalton Books, I think, or the calendar kiosk they set up at Christmas–I cannot remember which. At that time, I lived with my parents in the country–rolling hills and small-laned gravel roads that were typically deserted on cold, winter nights. One night as I was driving home from work, snow began to fall. As a new driver, I was terrified of sliding off the road. I remember my heart was beating really fast and my hands gripped the steering wheel as I drove. I was probably going only 15 mph, so I don’t know what I was afraid of…if I had to guess, it was likely just pent-up anxiety from working retail at Christmas. Anyway, the snow began falling a bit heavier and just then an enormous buck walked out of the woods and stopped in the middle of the road to stare at me. I stopped the car and stared into the eyes of that deer in awe and disbelief. Of course, I had seen deer before, but this felt personal. Time stood still and suddenly the space around me became magical and mystical. I have no idea how long I sat there. The silence of that experience was so deep. I still remember that feeling.  The feeling of communion.

This is one of the blessings of winter, the time to be idle, wrapped up and cozy, allowing the mind, memory, and imagination to wander. I hope you are taking advantage of this time to BE.

In Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving, I am so grateful for this life…my family and friends, students and sometimes strangers that offer a smile when I’m feeling down, the studio, my yoga practice and the beautiful yoga tradition I am so privileged to belong to. Those who know me will not be surprised to hear that I am also so grateful for books! This holiday, I offer you the beautiful, inspirational words of Swami Vivekananda that I read today:

Therefore, stand up, be bold, be strong. Take the whole responsibility on your shoulders, and know that you are the creator of your own destiny. All the strength and succour you want is within yourselves. Therefore, make your own future. “Let the dead past bury its dead.” The infinite future is before you, and you must always remember that each word, thought, and deed, lays up a store for you and that as the bad thoughts and bad works are ready to spring upon you like tigers, so also there is the inspiring hope that the good thoughts and good deeds are ready with the power of a hundred thousand angels to defend you always and for ever. From a lecture “The Cosmos: The Microcosm” delivered in New York on January 26, 1896.

Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

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