One of the things that I REALLY enjoyed while at the Create in Me retreat was the 30 minute Morning Movement session we did before the day got started. We gathered at 7:30 and did a variety of stretches together. It was very gentle and left me feeling oddly energized. I say oddly, because I tend to think that I need to do vigorous activities to feel energized.
This morning I felt sore and worn out from last night's work out. I yearned for a Morning Movement session. I noticed the light starting to change. I thought about the pool in my backyard. Aha!
I changed into my swimsuit (or bathing costume, as my English friend calls it) and got into the pool. It wasn't as cold as I expected. I did laps with my head above the water. I thought I'd do it for 10 minutes or 20, if I felt good. As I paddled, I decided to go for 30 minutes, and I did. Hurrah!
I tried to turn the experience into a more spiritual one. I gave thanks for the water and for my body which can still move through the water. I gave thanks for my parents who taught me to swim. I fished some palm flowers out of the water and gave thanks for the plants. I watched a squirrel scamper down the fence line and lizards scatter out of the squirrel's way--and I gave thanks for all the animals.
Several times I paused to float on my back and let the water hold me up. I thought about the ways that God holds us up, ways that won't always seem obvious.
I made the sign of the cross on my forehead as I remembered Martin Luther's advice that we remember our baptism daily as we do our morning washing. I thought about all the ways that we get a fresh start, day after day after day.
As the sun started to dapple the water, I thought about the sun salutations in yoga. I much prefer greeting the sun with a morning dip in the pool--my head can stay above my heart, so it's less dizzying. Sun salutations can strain my joints; I didn't have that problem in the pool.
I hope I can do this more often: begin and/or end the work day in the pool, giving thanks for creation, remembering my baptism.
feeling the feelings…
9 months ago