When you're 37, things begin to get a little touch and go, if you know what I mean. Things that used to work perfectly--so perfectly you never even knew they were happening--begin to slow down, breakdown, or otherwise give you cause for grief. This morning, I woke up and put my glasses on and had a really warped, strange sensation in the vision of my right eye. I've been having headaches for the past week, so of course, I immediately jump to the conclusion that I'm dying or having a stroke or some other catastrophe. The interesting part is not that I'm dying (which we all are, just not necessarily today) but my reaction. First, panic, then a more generalized fear reaction, then a quick review of my life, then denial. It made me realize that we are the judges of our lives--so many scriptures across all cultures speak of the day of judgment--and I realized in that split second where I moved from reviewing my life to denying that anything was wrong that I couldn't face the truth of my existence. I couldn't forgive myself. I couldn't simply be, in the quiet of the moment, in the face of my impending mortality--I couldn't accept who I am. Our teacher, Yogi Bhajan, said repeatedly that the only difference between himself and us was that he accepted himself completely--exactly as he was. There was no struggle within himself to be something other than himself. This morning's mini-crisis along with some other things that have arisen this week have made me take a step back and recognize that I can no longer live in fear. That I must be gentle with myself, yet not go "gently into that good night". And not be afraid to fully live.
So, for all of you, my friends, who are over 35. Take a moment to step back and relax. Recognize and remember who you are. And forgive yourself in each moment, so when the moment of truth comes, you've had a lot of practice and can smile and move forward in grace.