The world, nature, human beings, do not move like machines. The edges are never clear-cut, but always frayed. Nature never draws a line without smudging it. – Winston Churchill
We made it through 2020. A bit frayed, fried and perhaps worn for the wear, but we got to the end of the year. If you can believe it, it has been a little over 2 years since I first stepped foot into 102 Main Street and got a personal tour of the building. When I went upstairs, I was elated to find a ‘hidden gem’ secretly stored away on the back of the building. This gem was our patio. The back windows had been covered so it wasn’t visible from inside and the patio itself had been neglected and was full of too much furniture, weeds, and junk, but when I got a glimpse, I knew that was going to be special place. As we remodeled the building and prepared to move, one of our students was gracious enough to take on transforming the patio into our hidden oasis. It was a big undertaking, bigger than I had anticipated. Furniture was cleaned up, thrown out, given away, painted. Herb planters were placed about patio for color, fragrance and cooking uses. It was turning into the Oasis I knew it would be when I first saw it. The day Helen finished, to my surprise she put up Tibetan Prayer Flags. I will be honest, at first the prayer flags concerned me. I have always tried to stay ‘woo woo neutral’ so that our company was welcoming to all. I knew that some people wouldn’t know that the flags were symbolic to promote peace, compassion, strength and wisdom. Ultimately, the perfect addition to our new hidden gem and a symbol of what Om Prana wishes to instill into our community. The flags were vibrant colors and stretched across the patio and were easily viewed from our green room studio. I often got a glimpse of them waiving gently in the breeze and could hear our deep wind chime singing in harmony with one another. It was soothing.
It has been 9 months since students have practiced yoga classes in that studio. I continue to teach in that room, but now I livestream, thank you COVID. Some nights I go out and plug our lights in so I can infuse the oasis of the space into the class, even though students are not physically present. A few weeks ago, I was teaching during a daytime class and realized that the prayer flags were looking frayed and faded. They have lost their color, some lost their shape while others appear ripped. Yet, they were still flowing in the wind. I’ve been meaning to cut them down and replace them with the extra set Helen bought, but I emotionally have been unable to do this. On Wednesday, I literally took a ladder and scissors outside to do this and managed to get so sidetracked in the presence of the space and planning for the future that I completely forgot to do it. I got home and was utterly confused by my lack of action. On New Year’s Eve, I couldn’t stop focusing on the frayed flags that were still hanging on the back of my building because I forgot to replace them. How had I let them get like this? Can other people see how bad they look? Does the building feel like I have had neglected it? It’s 2020, seriously let it go. But, I couldn’t. Here is the reality, perhaps they aren’t supposed to be replaced-yet. Perhaps, this is a my visual cue that 2020 left us frayed and a bit faded from our pre-2020 life, but that life’s focus should not change. Peaceful living, displaying compassion, unifying strength and sharing wisdom in a less than ideal and perfect situation. We meet every New Year with cheers and anticipation of starting anew. 2021 will have 2020 linger for a while, but that doesn’t mean we have to be regretful that things aren’t perfect or yearn for years past. It is okay to fray just a little, but amplify peace, compassion, strength and wisdom within yourself. I don’t know yet when I will replace the flags with new ones. Just as I don’t know yet when we will all get back in the building for in-person classes. But know, we are as resilient as those flags, diverse in our edges, settled and malleable. We wish each of you a healthy and peaceful New Year.