Actually, I didn't learn that particular lesson at the posture clinic. I got that one as I was driving home. More on that later. First, I want to share a little bit about the posture clinic with Jim Kallett this weekend!
Jim's a good speaker, and the fact that he lectured for over three hours straight without me boring me out of my mind says a lot. A couple of standouts. One is that Bikram has an incredible life story. I'm sure you teachers have learned it by heart, but for those that haven't, go look it up somewhere. Gurus, smallpox, shattered knees, Paramahansa Yogananda's brother, feats of strength, Richard Nixon, Shirley McClain, jeez, the list goes on. I have heard all these details in dribs and drabs, but it was impressive to hear them told all at once, in narrative form. (Once again I see the truth in what poet Muriel Rukheyser says: "The universe is made up of stories, not atoms.")
I got some good advice, too. "When you get to a fork in the road, there's an easy way and a hard way. Always take the hard way," Jim said. Damn good advice. That one really resonated, particularly because I am one who revels in the easy way. Seriously, I just heard the ding of my microwavable macaroni 'n cheese announcing its done-ness.
Jim hit the nail on the head. He didn't say much after forcing my leg up to the ceiling, but he after letting me go, he said, "You're resisting. You have a lot of resistance." I couldn't help noticing he didn't say that to anyone else who came up.
There was some other good stuff at the posture clinic, but the biggest lesson came on my way home. I skipped the class at the end because I felt nauseous and had a budding migraine (resistance, anyone? Easy road, anyone?).
On my way home, I got into a minor car accident. I'll spare you the details. In retrospect, I was stuck by the calmness of the accident itself. There I was, driving 65 miles an hour, slowing down to pull off the freeway, when I saw the crate in the middle of the road. Within a span of a second, my mind had assessed the situation: "Shoulder on the right. Cars on your left. You are going to hit that crate." So, I hit the crate.
It wasn't until I was on the side of the road, exiting my car to see what the hell that god-awful scraping sound was (the crate instantly punctured my front tire), that the fear started washing in. "Oh my God. I could've died. Someone else might hit the crate. What do I do? My head hurts. Who do I call? Why did I cancel AAA?" Compared to the aftermath, the actual moment of "the accident" was quite calm.
I saw that three others had hit the crate before me. One of them bravely grabbed the crate out of the way before changing his tire so others wouldn't hit it. As I waited for my friend's son to come out and help me put on a spare, I started talking to the young woman who was also waiting for her tow-truck savior. Turns out, she's a Bikramite, too. We kinda gawked at each other in learning this--she'd even practiced at the studio I was coming home from.
What lesson is this? What do I take from this?? The only one I can process, after stress-eating on a fast-food fish sandwich and french fries and sleeping for twelve hours, is this: Judgment takes time. Worried about an accident or disaster? Don't be. The thing itself isn't nearly as frightening as anything your mind will make it up to be later.