The concept of life as a circle came to me through Native American teachers. My study has not been extensive yet it has been instrumental in clarifying and refining my perceptions of life and how I live it. For example, this time of year, as fall approaches, I am reminded that nature changes in the fall. Birds molt, animals begin to put on their winter coats, and trees and plants drop leaves or die back. My teachers remind me that it is a time of letting go of that which has fulfilled its purpose; it is also a time of preparing for winter, which is a time of settling in and turning inward as the days grow shorter and colder.
This morning I am reminded that fall is approaching and that I am already beginning to let go of thought patterns and attitudes that I needed to make a life-changing transition this year. I am settling into my new home and community and letting go the intensity that I needed to accomplish all of this. My mind is quieter and I relish the cooler mornings and evenings. I stroll after dinner and gratitude arises naturally from within for all that I have done and for the courage I had to change my life as I began this, my 70th year. Yes, in January I will celebrate the end of my 70th year and begin my 71st.
As a side note, you do realize, don’t you, that your birthday number is the year behind you not the year ahead of you? Last January I “turned” 69 which meant I had completed my 69th year and I am now coming to the end of my 70th year so I will “turn” 70 this coming January. Just think about it. It isn’t super important but one of those funny things we often are not aware of when it comes to our age.
Back to my theme this morning. I am very aware this morning, due to the changing weather and the coming of autumn, that I am well into the second half of the circle of my life. I am on the back side of the circle. I don’t feel like I am but statistics say that I am. Age is weird to me anyway because some days I feel ancient in the sense of knowing I have done this many times before and being aware of an inner knowing that goes beyond my years. Other days I feel young and much healthier and happier that I was in my twenties. I realized this week that I began teaching and speaking with regard to spirituality 40 years ago! What? I began teaching yoga 23 years ago!
Yep, I am definitely somewhere on the back half of the circle. This awareness brings a new depth of appreciation and gratitude for where I am today and all that I have learned and experienced, whether fun and easy or sad and difficult. All that I have experienced has brought me to this moment and made me the woman, the human being I am today. To my teachers, thank you now and forever for loving me, guiding me, and believing in me. To my family and friends, thank you for hanging in there with me every time I changed and chose yet one more thing to try on and experience. I know you found me confusing and wished I would just stay the same for once in my life. As usual, I will use being an Aquarian as my reason! You know that is an air sign which means I love to fly on the wind! And I am way more grounded than most in that aspect, so thank you for waiting for me to land so you could figure out who I am this time. And to those of you, most recently R-K, who get me and cheer me on, who even remind me of who I truly am, I love you forever and am eternally grateful for your love and support.
I love my place on the circle of life. I am grateful I have this many years to learn and grow and become. I am grateful to be deeply aware that I am so not done yet!! Every day is a gift, dear hearts.
Love and peace and joy all ways. Namaste.