A Tree in a Hurricane

I’ve had a bit of a scare recently. I will not be fine (who among us will be, really?), but I’m a lot better off than I feared. 

The past week was difficult. I had just started outlining a twenty-year plan for my life and career from 47 to 67. I’d ordered a stack of interesting books, and made a list of mentors to talk to. There were things to learn, possibilities to investigate… Exciting stuff.

Then I stumbled onto what sounded like some very bad news during a routine physical. Suddenly the future didn’t look like it was going to be much fun. I don’t scare easily, but I’ve never been so afraid.

It was like being in a hurricane, struck by new information and realizations like 2x4s hurled in the wind. In that hurricane, Aikido was the deeply-rooted tree I was clinging to. Friday night’s class (see my previous post about it) could not have come at a better time or been more perfect. (How does Sensei do that?) Everything I’ve learned about meditation, breathing, staying present, being in my body, moving in, keeping my center… It all came into play. On Monday, when I should have been up in the mountains training my horse, I arranged for him to be turned out to play, and went to the dojo instead. Clinging to my sturdy tree. Another two classes last night kept me grounded.

Today I got test results that added up to very good news. More tests ahead, and ongoing management. But I was already doing that.

Aikido is probably the best thing I could have been doing for the past year, and into the future, both physically and emotionally. I had cut back recently to 3 days a week to spend more time with Rainy. But I’m going to try to go at least 4 days, 5 when I can, at least for now. Something else will have to give. Maybe I’ll have to hire a trainer to work with Rainy during the week.

This whole adventure has been a good reminder. Treasure every moment. Take nothing for granted. Don’t put things off. I’m so glad I went to that 5-day seminar at the start of the year, that I’ve been able to train so much, that I’m working regularly with my horse, that I spend lots of time with my husband having fun together, that I do rewarding work I enjoy, that I spend time in nature… There are a few things I need to be doing more – that I shouldn’t be putting off. Someone said “it’s not the things we do that we regret, but the things we do not do.” When you have opportunities to do what you love, take them. You never know if you’ll have the chance later. 

Right now I have every expectation that I will continue to have those chances. <whew!> So it’s back to crafting that twenty-year plan, with optimism and excitement. It will definitely include Aikido. Right after I go out for dinner and walk with the love of my life.