Before I began to write this, I stopped to sit down on my front step. Facing the sun rising above my garden shed, I took a deep breath. The warmth of the sun soaked into my skin.
I took another breath, following it to the muscles that were creating a lift to my shoulders. I exhaled, gently easing my shoulders with my breath.
I inhale into the tired, soreness between my shoulder blades. I exhale, leading with my upper rib cage – shoulders, head and neck following – I twist to the left. I sit in the stillpoint of my breath, exploring the opening of my spine.
Inhale to the center. Exhale to the right to take an exploratory journey to the other side of my body.
Inhale to center. I am aware of the air all around me, some of which I’m pulling into my lungs.
I hear the sharp call of a blue jay. I open my eyes to see him land on a low branch in the tree in front of me. Another hops down from a higher branch to join him. The third flies from the top of the crab-apple tree across the street. A fourth floats/flies to the ground near my feet, cocking its head at me like some kind of blue royalty showing off his crown. He hops/flies onto the branch with the other jays.
They are all chattering at once – hopping now and then to get a point across.
I listen to their message; actually I looked it up in the Animal Speak book by Ted Andrews. But I am listening:
Follow through on what you start.
Leave no unfinished business dangling.
Sometimes the journey of yoga is as close as your yoga mat. Sometimes it is as far away as India. And sometimes if you make the decision and conscious effort to do so, the journey of yoga can be found in your breath, no matter where you are.
That is the journey of yoga at its most sublime.
Judy Merritt is a Yoga North International SomaYoga Alumni, Author, and beautiful yogini.