Finding Stillness in the Ordinary
It’s a five hour drive from my home in Pottstown Pa, to the town where I grew up. My 3 boys and I make the trek often and have the trip down. We know a variety of restaurants along the way, which exit has a gas station, when we are half way etc. Let’s just say we hit the road on auto-pilot. After a long drive through the rain on Thursday we decided to stop at a trail head for a bike path that runs through the Pennsylvania Grand Canyon. This is about an hour from Grandmas house and was recently discovered on my last one on one trip with my middle son. Despite the lingering rain we decided to get out and stretch. We headed through a clearing in the bushes to get to the river. The boys were thrilled to be out of the car and near water. I was happy to stretch my legs and shake the feeling o f grogginess from driving. The boys happily gathered rocks and tried to see if they could throw one and then immediately throw a second to land in the ripple of the first. The boys played while I took in the surroundings and immediately began to breathe. Not just breathe, but mindfully, completely clearing my mind of the driving agenda, the rain, and the fatigue. I folded into a forward bend and felt a deep sense of peace in that moment, I felt complete stillness. The sounds and laughter of the boys, the rocks hitting the water were all in the periphery. I felt complete peace in that moment, exactly what I like to encourage while teaching pranayama and meditation. We headed back to the car, the rain finally ended and I’d like to say there was peace for the rest of the drive. That wouldn’t be realistic. There was still some bickering over the card game “Bull.” This time my reaction to them was different. I didn’t turn and say ‘knock it off’ or the classic from childhood “I can stop this car” I took it in stride and so did they.
So often in class I encourage students to find moments of silence throughout their day. I find myself saying “Five minutes of mindful breathing everyday can make each day so much better” And on Thursday after a long drive I felt bliss in an ordinary moment of mindful breathing.
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