Rushing the sun

Maya Tulum, Cabana No. 26
July 2011

Veggies: Nothing super-special lately ... need to work on that.

Wine: See above.

For one week in July, DP and I had the pleasure of living by the sea, practicing yoga for three and a half hours each day, eating delicious and lovingly prepared meals, and connecting with interesting, intelligent and kind people from across the globe at Barefoot Works' annual retreat in Tulum, Mexico.  (And, I got to put a big old checkmark next to my very first Mondo Beyondo dream to come true.)

Every day was also full of reflection. I spent significant time sitting in my chair overlooking the ocean, thinking about how I want to live my life: generously, mindfully, joyfully. I also confronted some of the not-so-dreamy parts of my life, such as the energetic burdens I choose to carry on my shoulders and the way in which I demand others to conform to my schedule.

Case in point: Watching the sunrise is a must when I'm at the beach. As I was sitting in my chair one day before dawn, I began to feel distracted. I had a few things I wanted to do before the 7 am yoga class, and as I glanced back and forth between the horizon and my watch, I found myself rushing the sun. Yes, actually willing the sun to hurry up and rise so I could just get on with my day, on the schedule I imagined I needed to follow. I realized how very ridiculous this was, but I still struggled to enjoy the sun while forgetting about my to-do list. I wondered who else in the world might need to remind themselves of this when staring at a gorgeous ocean sunrise?

I held this thought during my morning yoga practice and returned to my room later to write this haiku*:

She who would rush the sun
is blind to
the unfolding beauty.

During the rest of the week, and as a goal for my back-to-the-real-world life, I decided to seek the unfolding beauty of each situation. What was I missing when I focused only on accomplishing tasks, getting from A to B, and adhering to my mostly made-up time schedule? I created a mantra -- "I delight in _____" -- to help me become more aware of what I was experiencing and noticing, and to also help me get back on track when I became caught up in the wrong things (e.g., "I delight in being angry about this traffic jam," or, from a situation today, "I delight in stepping into an ankle-deep puddle." Being able to laugh at myself and my thought process is definitely part of the unfolding beauty of any moment.

I'm far from achieving this goal (just ask DP), and it gets buried for weeks at a time (last week in particular, for some reason). Something tells me this will be a life-long challenge ... but there's unfolding beauty in that, too, right? I guess I'll need to travel to Maya Tulum every year to really remind myself.

*Once I decided to write a haiku about my experience, my mind started racing about the structure -- I couldn't remember how many syllables in each line, and I didn't have a computer or phone next to me to check. I almost gave up before I started. Then I realized that if it was my haiku, I could decide the structure. My apologies to the haiku purists.


  1. Beautiful, beautiful post, Jen... I loved the haiku!


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