Losing the Way

I got there again – that place where I become a grumpy, frantic lunatic that just oozes negativity. The one who can’t remember how she was ever happy, loses her connection to creativity, and doubts everything in her life. And while I was there, I didn’t realize how far I’d driven myself beyond exhaustion.

Luckily, my über patient fiancé was kind enough to treat me like a 33-year-old toddler having a tantrum. He knew that with lots of rest and a yoga session I’d regain my much cheerier self.

DSCN1032I felt like an abysmal failure since my inner monster had resurfaced with a vengeance. It had been a tumultuous few weeks but I found little satisfaction in the excuses.

The why didn’t matter because this little episode served as glaring proof that I can’t change. I can read all my wonderful Buddhism texts, meditate, find beauty in my morning walks, hell even find beauty while nervously pacing outside a hospital for news, but I couldn’t stop the freight train of negativity.

But then my Thursday night hot yoga session revived me.  In my post-practice haze, I started thinking about the many terrific quotes on failure, especially the wise words of Ralph Waldo Emerson: “The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.”

I had always thought those words were reserved for the bigger failures of life like the screenplay that had fallen short of acceptance and my most disastrous relationship. But this relapse has taught me that the smaller, repeat failures matter just as much because you still need to pick yourself up. It’s the only way to live boldly and fully – you have to be willing to fail repeatedly and, most importantly, risk failing bigger.

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