The Tao of Gratitude
posted by: Lori Lavender Luz
My yoga teacher is hung up on gratitude. Got something good going on? Show gratitude! Got something bad going on? Show gratitude! She focuses on opening our hips and expanding our hearts because “open hips = happy heart.” And a happy heart is a grateful one.
After a stretchy sequence to eke open our hips more — more — MORE — the instructor closed our practice with this quote during savasana, the pose of total relaxation at the end of class:
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.
— Melody Beattie
Those words led to big emotions on my mat.
My journey through infertility and adoption flashed before my eyes. My sickly, failure-of-a-body has evolved into something I love, both in the way it looks and functions. The dark days during which I nearly lost the will to live were juxtaposed with the brilliant light I found in an online infertility community. My empty arms and longing heart gave way to a fantastically full home — basketballs, laundry, toys and the two children who leave those things all over. Everyday chaos is balanced by the calm stillness I find when I draw my attention solely to the space on my mat.
- Day + night = a day
- Good + evil = humanity
- Passionate Democrats + passionate Republicans = Americans
- Broken + forgiveness = wholeness
- An Infertile + a superfertile = open adoption
- Self-loathing + self love = me
It was bliss. I felt gratitude for every single thread in the tapestry that is my life.
May your November be full of things to be grateful for.
Lori blogs from metro-Denver at LavenderLuz.com. Her book, The Open-Hearted Way to Open Adoption: Helping Your Child Grow Up Whole, written with her daughter’s birth mom, will be published by Rowman & Littlefield in 2013.