I started today off with a volunteer meeting to begin planning for next year’s Monumental Yoga Summer Solstice event. I’m honored and humbled to be on the team and can’t wait to dig in…it’s gonna be so cool! Finally 100+ days in I’ve found something to get involved in that I’m passionate about. Hopefully this is the beginning of much more community involvement, volunteerism, and outreach.
Since I was already on the Circle, I decided to pop over and visit the office. Say hi to some of the amazing people — old friends — that slave away day after day to do good things for the state. Walking into the office was kinda weird.
For starters, I was wearing flip flops and a strapless sundress. Two things I would have never dreamed of wearing into the office just four months ago. I had my hair pulled up on top of my head and no make up. I’m sure some of the folks that saw me barely recognized me…I feel like I look nothing like I used to. I’m sure they thought the same.
It was great to catch up with folks…everyone asking how retirement is going. I could hear the tinge of jealousy…I mean, who wouldn’t be. I still can’t believe this is my life! When I asked them about work, I was only slightly surprised at how little had changed since my departure 106 days ago. The same projects…same challenges…same negotiations…It was like I’d never left, yet couldn’t really remember even being there to begin with.
To think I use to get up every morning, put on “work clothes”…do my hair and make up…drive to Starbucks and then the office…and spend the next 8-10 hours on calls…in meetings…emailing…writing lifeless documents. To think that was my life for 15 years…almost unimaginable.
To think I used to identify almost solely with my career. I was Candy…GM…Vice President…who managed blah, blah, blah. The transition out of that hit home for me when my mom introduced me to her nurses and told them I was a yoga teacher. I don’t think I’ve ever been prouder. To be identified first as a daughter and then as a teacher of something I love. Granted, it’s a bit of a stretch…I haven’t taught that many classes yet and paddle board yoga doesn’t start till the end of the month…but still. I think I was as proud of myself as she was of me.
After I left the office I ran home, changed into my swim suit, loaded my paddle board, and headed out to Eagle Creek Reservoir to spend some time on the water. The temperature of the air and water was awesome. Not too hot and not too cold…it was just right.
As I started to move through some yoga postures, I pushed back into three-legged downward dog just as a bird soared across the reservoir towards me. The white head and expansive wings caught my eye so I quickly dropped to my knees just in time to watch a majestic eagle fly by. I watched it fly past me and away toward the trees. I wasn’t done yet so I started saying “turn around…turn around…come back…” over and over in my head. And sure enough, the eagle made a sweeping turn and flew back my direction. I was speechless…and in complete awe. It was beautiful.
When the eagle disappeared into the trees, I resumed yoga for a bit longer. Eventually resting in savasana on the board with my hands floating in the water. It was so peaceful…calm…refreshing. This is my life now…and it feels like it’s always been my life.
The juxtaposition of a day spent talking about or doing yoga bookending a visit to my old office…with the feeling of complete freedom to do with my time what I love versus the feeling of being trapped in an office and slaving to meet the needs and expectations of others. The feeling of transition from a VP working for someone else to the chief innovator of my life working for myself.
As I left the lake and made my way home, I found a sense of peace and purpose that I’d spent years searching for in a title…an office…a paycheck…buying “stuff”…and never found. I never found it because it was sitting inside me all along…just waiting…patiently waiting for me to find my way into it. It feels good to be home.