Welcome to July – a fresh month (and season) ripe with opportunity. It’s a sultry time of the year as we launch into full-on summer mode. Think beaches, camping, and tasty veggies on the grill. Oh, and it’s important to note that we are officially halfway through 2012 (and I’m excited to turn a year older on June 30)! This time of the year brings about scheduled reflection with review of experiences over the past year and dreams of experiences for the upcoming year.
Since May 22 I’ve been traveling in France hosting two 10-day Art + Yoga retreats (note the lovelies resting in a colorful savasana above) followed by two weeks touring Provence in a camping car. The above photos capture a bit of the journey that included lots of glacée (may be freshly addicted to lavender and rose petal), lavender fields, outdoor markets overflowing with yummy produce, panoramic views, and heaps of tea sipping – truly a trip of a lifetime. Ironically, the idea was generated while hosting my 2011 January Urban Retreat when a few lovely ladies (Catherine, Julia, and Carol) recommended I add France to my retreat list. Voilà, ask and you shall receive! I must credit these three ladies for planting the seed on a day when I was supposed to be helping them plant seeds for the year ahead.
As I reflect on what the past six weeks have offered, I am at a loss for words to truly sum up the experience. I’ve met amazing women who I’ve known in the online world for years (we had participants from Australia, France, England, Canada, and all over the US). I have been able to slow down sans graduate school deadlines for the first time in three years. I downshifted into semi-sabbatical mode days before we left for this adventure and I continue to mourn the loss of my beloved Gramma on many levels. In addition, I drove a camping car through narrow roads and sheer cliffs in Gorges du Verdon (thank you yogic breathing) and did lots of “legs up the camper.”
The above quote by Einstein serves as the perfect reminder during this mid-year period of reflection. There are so many books that tout tips for finding balance and I’m usually the first in line to read them. However, how delightfully simple to embrace that the key to balance is to keep moving . . . mindfully, but still moving. Keep growing, keep experiencing, keep exploring. As we move into the second half of 2012 how will you keep moving? I’m not advocating for massive upheaval, but simply an ongoing check-in with yourself to ensure you’re finding your edge on and off the yoga mat. At the studio we encourage it within that space of sensation in a yoga pose– beyond the comfort zone, well before pain.
As I move into my fortieth year, I invite you to join me on this continued path to find balance through moving. I’ll be finishing up my master’s in social work next year, interning part-time in Amtrak’s Employee Assistance Program, immersing myself in mindfulness studies, teaching my Monday classes at our Dupont location, and enjoying sprinkles of creative play and activism thrown into the mix.
My wish is for each of you to keep moving in the direction of your dreams and to take time monthly, quarterly, or annually to review them. May the second half of 2012 bring you bicycle rides through Rock Creek Park, weekend picnics on the mall, the chance to dip your toes in the sand, and an opportunity to keep your balance. Life is about creating (and savoring) every day experiences like a tasty cuppa tea. Namaste.