Still exhaling Y’All…..and it feels freaking amazing.  My insides are getting lighter every time I write, as I sit in the sun soaking in some Vitamin D, eating fresh vibrant whole foods, no alcohol and a gallon of water a day.  I allow my self to actually be Zen.

The reason I feel compelled to write this one is because I have been on a search for ZEN and not feeling very ZEN-like the past 8 months.  Instead of ZEN-like, I feel overwhelmed, anxious, alone, overworked and under appreciated.  Yes, this yogi feels that way at times too.  Except, for me it is typically only for an hour I allow these feelings and then I check myself, go “above the line” and find my ZEN.  I have not experienced a period of darkness last this long ever.  I doesn’t fit me well and I have decided to take that outfit off and throw it in the fireplace.

It began last summer when opening the SHINE Margate studio, which was a dream come true.  But quickly the three-some of our SHINE team became a two-some and I was underwater.  When I feel a struggle - I don’t give in, ever, to a fault actually.  I just find a way to make that shit work - as gracefully as I can.  I keep my eye on the prize and focus on it.  At the same time as this happening, we had a team of yogis heading to Africa and needing to fundraise. Looking to me to lead the charge - I wasn’t able to fully do that and operate/manage the third studio.  I literally ran myself into the ground.  It is imperative that I take care of myself - physically, spiritually and mentally.  I did not.  Needless to say the ball starting rolling quickly downhill and I kept pushing it back uphill and losing the battle.  My health deteriorated, my blood disease became active and in a danger zone and I had to pull out of going to Africa for service.  Not allowed to travel.  I felt Sad, Anger, Shame and Resentment.  I needed to heal my body but also needed to fundraise and be at cause for others.  Every day I would say “just get thru today Wanda and tomorrow you can focus on you” and tomorrow never came.  Treatments ensued, lots of doctors appointments, more treatments.  Doctors asked me to step away from work for 30 days - I said NO, I have SHINE Medford to open and time is a ticking.  Until it all came crashing in - a morning where I literally couldn’t walk, I couldn’t talk coherently and I had to stop.  That was only one week before Christmas.  WAKE UP CALL…..that I finally picked up instead of sending it to voicemail again.  

I sat down and listened to my body, my doctors and my intuition.  I began a regime of healing my brain, my blood and my heart.  I am committed to finding ZEN and remembering what ZEN really truly is in the middle of all situations - 100% of them - with no exceptions.  So here is my list of ZEN and I hope it encourages you to make a list too.  EXHALE people - too much inhaling leads to suffocation.

ZEN - is just a three letter word reminding myself that life is a full spectrum sport - with brutal ugly days and amazingly beautiful sunny days and staying consistent through both of them - as all are temporary.  Search & see the neutral ground.

ZEN - is just a three letter word for turning the other cheek when a friend/teacher/family member goes into reaction mode and decides to play the victim card until it wears the hell out.  Turning the other cheek actually means “to look away and set your eyes in another direction” it doesn’t mean let them slap the hell out of the other side of your face/heart.  

ZEN - is just a three letter word for choosing to go to bed an hour early instead of staying up to watch TV you don’t care about because you think your “being with” your family (who are watching said tv and really don’t care that you just want your bed).

ZEN - is just a three letter word for having the difficult conversation that will be “at cause” for the change you need to happen at work/home….the conversation that removes what is stagnant and just needs you to exhale into it so it will move again.

ZEN - is just a three letter word for taking a bubble bath.

ZEN - is just a three letter word for the agreement I have for my children, that if Mom is gonna drive their beautiful behinds all over the country for travel sports, they will do laundry, clean and cook daily.  And believe me my boys & daughters have nailed this!  No complaints because it isn’t optional - it is called agreement.  

ZEN is just a three letter word for choosing to get on your yoga mat 6 days a week instead of making excuses about being too busy.  No yoga mat means you choose to be in pain which is NON-ZEN.

ZEN is just a three letter word for beginning at 1 when your list feels like it has 59842 items on it.  You know you can’t complete that much on the list - so why are you stressing??  Just begin at what needs to happen right now and then move to the next important thing.  Stop when your kids get home from school and then be with them.

ZEN is a three letter word for lunch with a girlfriend.

ZEN is a three letter word for choosing to LOVE when apathy wants to set in.

ZEN is a three letter word for believing in something - faith.

ZEN is a three letter word for downloading 10 books you can’t wait to read.

ZEN is a three letter word for when your husband says “my work just rewarded us with four days in Hawaii and I want to go for 8, do you wanna come” and your reply isn’t BUT the kids, BUT I have three studios, BUT ya-da-ya-da-ya-da.  When you live in ZEN you say HELL YEAH - I need to buy a bikini.

ZEN is a three letter word for choosing to see the center of every situation - not the worse case scenario and not the best case scenario - but actually the middle - where you respond instead of react.  Take the good with the bad - take the middle road that has no short cuts but gets you there the scenic route.  Sometimes the center/long road takes longer and sometimes it moves quicker and with ease avoiding lots of traffic jams.

ZEN is a three letter word that tells me to DO THE WORK.  ALL THE WORK - not just the hard stuff to build a successful business and happy family but this includes the work that builds Wanda to be a healthy, vibrant woman of God who loves her family, a servant of people ALL people.

ZEN - it is just a three letter word.  You choose ZEN when you choose to create it and you go with the ebb and flow

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