It’s been over a year since I started dating Coach. I’ve been thinking about those days a lot lately. Remembering how afraid I was. Afraid of being hurt. Afraid of trusting the wrong man. Afraid of loving again.
I read Holly Sidell’s article, He’s Not The One, around that time. Told myself Coach isn’t the one. He isn’t the one. He. Isn’t. The. One.
The mantra did nothing to stop me from falling for him.
I remember trying to relax enough to enjoy the little time I had with him. He lived an hour away, and traveled three weekends out of four. For speaking engagements. Trips to Colorado to see his boys.
Actually, being with Coach was always easy. The doubts only crept in when he was gone. Which was most of the time.
I didn’t realize how hard I was fighting to keep my heart protected.
About a month after we started dating, I was in yoga class. It was a chest opening class.
The first pose was supported fish pose. Lying on our backs, a block under the back of our head and a second block under our upper back, chest extended up to the ceiling. There is no way to lie in a fish pose without exposing your heart. Literally and figuratively.
Not an easy pose for someone who’d spent the last month trying to hide her heart.
As I lay in supported fish pose that morning, I felt a physical and spiritual ache as my heart opened up. Tears slid out of the corners of my eyes into my hairline.
I struggled through that entire class. The supported fish pose was just the first in a string of chest opening poses.
In trying to protect my spiritual heart, my body automatically curved in, protecting my physical heart.
Chest openers provide the physical opening, exposing the spiritual heart to the light as well.
Self-knowledge comes slowly to me. Slowly and usually painfully.
It took a few more classes before I put all the pieces together. Lying in another supported fish pose, in another class, I thought my way through what my heart was trying to tell me.
I could relax and enjoy my time with Coach. Risk my heart. Trust myself to survive if it didn’t work out.
Or I could continue to make myself miserable with worry, afraid of a heartache that may never come, and never allowing myself to enjoy time with a smart, funny man.
In the end, Coach was not my life mate, the one I’m destined to spend the rest of my life with.
But he was an important step in my development. Dating him taught me many things. Things like trusting my gut, that still small voice that speaks to each of us. Whether we choose to listen to it or not.
The most important lesson, that I can fall in love and survive. I am strong. I am resilient.
I can choose love. Because I know if it doesn’t work out, I’ll still be okay.
What do you choose?