Day 20: Joy of Handstands

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Serendipitous, perhaps, how we came together this sunny Monday morning.

At five to seven, the three of us remarked on how you just never knew how many people would show up with a few minutes to spare before a class was to begin. As we watched the clock tick, as our teacher took the opportunity to hang upside down on the newly installed rope wall, my friend and I continued to discuss our shared fear of handstands.

I wasn’t so afraid of being upside down, I said, there was just something about kicking up that I found terrifying. I am afraid of falling on my face, she said. And so we continued back and forth for the next few minutes, speaking our truths, relieved, I think, to find a kindred spirit in this particular fear.

Seven o’clock, and it was time to start. Still just the three of us. A blessing, a rare gift, to have a class this small. Jennifer asked us what we wanted to work on, and without thinking, the word handstands flew out of my mouth. Meghan and I looked at each other in shock. Somehow, I felt ready to turn everything upside down. To work with this fear of standing on my hands. The space was sacred and safe. I felt supported by my teacher, and my fellow student. It was time. It was time to shake it up.

We worked hard to get there. We worked every muscle, every cell in our bodies. We listened to the words of our teacher and digested the information she shared through our movements.

My first attempt to kick up, I was assisted by her loving hands. Being up, having my legs over my head felt thrilling.

The second time I kicked up unassisted, and there I was!

Floating! Standing upside down, feeling the blood rush to head, feeling weightless and alive! What joy! What freedom! What strength and power and remarkable magic to be standing on my hands!

I can still feel the buzz in my body, mind and spirit as I type.

For those moments that I was in the air, I felt as if the veil fell away, and I was seeing the possibilities of my practice for the first time.

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