Last week I was inspired by the stories of two different amazing, powerful young women. One of them offered incredible wisdom that she asked to be shared with the world upon her passing. One of them beat overwhelming odds and is truly a miracle.
Holly Butcher was a fun-loving 28 yr old who lost her battle with cancer but shared her wisdom with the world. As I read her letter last week that was released upon her passing I was inspired by it. In it she emphasizes being in and enjoying the moment. To focus on what really matters and to let go of what does not. She reminds us that we have the power to change things in our lives or in ourselves to make us happier. She emphasized that mental, spiritual and emotional happiness are what is truly important. The wisdom she had at such a young age is truly inspiring.
The other woman who inspired me is someone in my personal life who I have witnessed experience the unimaginable. At 30 years old, Christine received a devastating health diagnosis. She was given a 5% chance of survival 18 months ago. Throughout her journey she has beaten the odds each time. It has been like watching a miracle unfold and all we can do is cheer from the sidelines. Christine has stayed positive, she has fought and after countless procedures, 15 rounds of chemo and surgery to have her entire stomach removed, she is now officially in remission from stage 4 stomach cancer. She has made medical history. It is truly a miracle.
The news from both of these women came to me within hours of each other. If I hadn’t been focused, open to what the universe was sending me I might have missed the connection. Both WISDOM and MIRACLES exist in our lives. When we stay present in the moment we can receive those “presents” of the moment.
On the mat last week, I shared two tools for being present; focus on the WISDOM in the tough times and the MIRACLES all the time. As it often does, this practice starts on the mat…in the body. As we began to warm up I asked my students to pay attention to what their body was going to offer in practice that day. I asked them to look for wisdom. Be wise, listen to what the body is saying to you. If it is unhappy in some way, take the wisdom from that. And then look for miracles. The miracles of what our bodies can do is endless. In the opening Sun Salutes as we paired the breath and the movement together to create heat in the body, we began to strengthen and stretch. As we moved deeper into practice and began to explore balancing in various ways; on one leg for Eagle pose, one one arm and leg in Side Plank and eventually on two arms in Eagle Side Bakasana (pictured above) we realized we can defy gravity and fly. From there we explored deep backbends and celebrated the miracle that is the spine. The body is truly miraculous.
We can find wisdom and miracles off the mat as well when we stay present in the moment. Of course it can be challenging in the busy times, the hard times and even the joyful times to not focus on what’s next or what’s wrong and instead what is the present (gift) in the now moment. However, the more we practice the more present we become and the more presents we receive. We can look for the wisdom that is there; what can be learned in that moment to improve future moments. We can celebrate the miracles that show themselves. Wisdom and Miracles are both the tools and the gifts of staying Present in the moment. There is always a Present to be had in the moment. Namaste.