Open Mind and an Open Heart

Zuko_and_Iroh_at_the_Western_Air_Temple

Uncle Iroh: You know, Prince Zuko, destiny is a funny thing. You never know how things are going to work out. But if you keep an open mind and an open heart, I promise you will find your own destiny someday.

In 2011 during a particularly enlightening yoga workshop I recognized my purpose: I knew with absolute certainty that my purpose in life was to help people heal through creative expression. I had no idea how to do it but I saw myself thriving if I found a way to fulfill that purpose. I talked to people in the field who I trusted and respected, and sought advice from business owners. I created a Project Scrapbook and in it wrote daily, all of my plans and ideas, colouring and highlighting them with sketches and drawings and dreams.

By the end of that year, after the disastrous break-up of a dysfunctional co-dependent relationship, I was drinking often. Too often of course, but I did not see that back then. I did not know, as I do now, that my drinking was fostering fear and uncertainty in my life. I was using it as an escape and all it ever did was stop me from tidying up my side of the street. Hell, it kept me from tidying up my little space on this Earth. Tidying it up and preparing it for it’s true purpose. My Project Scrapbook stayed closed for a long time. I could not find a way to believe in myself and kept my mind and heart closed. I was afraid that I would never do anything worthwhile and that my life, that I, was worthless. So I stopped dreaming. I was in despair and I did not even know it.

Goethe says, “Take care of your body with steadfast fidelity. The soul must see through these eyes alone, and if they are dim, the whole world is clouded.”

This quote means so much to me now.  In February 2014 when I quit drinking I focused all of my attention on dealing with early sobriety and the onslaught of reality checks and emotions it brought with it. I focused on understanding the changes I was going through and on getting healthy. I began tidying my little space. I moved into a smaller apartment, paid off my debts, and made practical plans for my financial future. I worked on my spirit too. As I began to feel healthier, my mind cleared as did my intuition. I started to trust myself more and had decided to let my heart lead me where it would. I felt the pull and tug of certain workshops and classes and I followed with an open mind and an open heart, sometimes not knowing what to expect, but never regretting the decision to attend. Without the physical, psychological and emotional fallout from drinking, there is more space and time in my life for opening doors and widening avenues on my true path.

Four years have passed since that eight week yoga workshop and although my initial venture did not blossom, I am as sure as ever that my destiny lies on this path. I’m going after my dreams again. This time with excitement instead of anxiety, with faith instead of fear, with gratitude instead of despair, and with confidence that I am open to the possibilities.

“We think when we stop drinking that we are giving up a mind-expanding substance, when in fact sobriety is the true freedom, and opens up new horizons beyond anything we could have dreamt.” ~ Primrose

~*~

This is Post O, in the A to Z Blogging Challenge 2015. My 26 posts are inspired by the quotes from Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra, two Emmy award-winning animated television series created and produced by Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko. The setting for both series is in an Asian-influenced world of martial arts and elemental manipulation. The shows drew on elements from East Asian, South Asian, and Western culture, and (aside from the kick-ass story lines, beautifully developed characters and exceptional storyboards) are where I found a wealth of inspiration and perspective on my own life.

The rest of my A to Z 2015 posts can be found here.

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11 comments

  1. OH my….

    having just gotten home from my last day in yoga teacher training, this is resonating for me so much.
    I had no hopes, dreams or plans for so very long, and what primrose says is true….stopping drinking opened an unknown world to me, one of possibility. The possibility that there night be something more, that i could dream again, or hope. My gratitude is over flowing.
    i’m not sure what i will do next…but i know the experience i just had, which i would NEVER have done, or even considered, had i still been drinking, has changed me in a profound way, one that will keep reverberating.
    HA! I just started laughing because I thought I should be writing about this on MY blog!!
    And I will…but not until i say that your message today is beautiful and hopeful , i am so happy for you…thank you for writing this!

    1. Lol. We inspire each other’s posts. Happens to me so often too. Congratulations on completing your yoga teacher training, on your terms. 🙂 Vibrate the Cosmos!

  2. Hello! See you are a few behind, hope you catch up! We found Transcendental Meditation, which if done twice a day somehow stops you wanting stuff like alcohol, and even cigarettes and coffee… not that we ever smoked! Sometimes we do some yoga before the meditation, it really does relax you. ~Liz http://www.lizbrownleepoet.com

  3. Oh my, what a wonderful and relevant post! I also didn’t realize the fear and uncertainty drinking was creating in my life. Last year, I signed up for yoga teacher training. I felt like this had been calling me for years, and I had a secret hope that dedicating my time to training would help me cut down on my drinking.

    I quit after only two weekend sessions. I felt like a complete fraud. I knew I had this terrible, unhealthy secret I was hiding and I was terrified of being exposed. It was all too personal and raw me in that moment. It was only a month or two after quitting training that I finally quit drinking.

    You are so right that taking alcohol out of picture is making everything better. I have not gone back to yoga yet, but I will. I love that Goethe quote in your post. That feels so true now.

    Namaste 🙂

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