The Exhale

FullSizeRender (5)The bottom of the exhale is the scariest place to be.

In yoga
In the ocean
In life

We are beyond empty here
Completely exposed,
in need,
at the mercy of life to grant us that next

As terrifying as it is,
it is just as liberating
just as f***ing freeing
to have nothing,
to hold nothing,
to own nothing

except this pause,
this longer-than-I-can-stand pause
where mortality and humility and fragility merge
into a kind of this-could-be-it ultimatum

That’s why it’s so scary
That’s why it’s so necessary
That’s why we must visit the darkness,
the emptiness,
the bottomless pit of our exhale

So we learn what we must do with our inhale

Our lifelong gift of inhales that are never guaranteed,
but so rich and fertile with the promise of life
that we take them for granted

We expect them to be there
until they’re not.

They’re not there, inflating the heart and soul of the mate you’re hugging.
They’re not there, lifting the belly and warming the skin of the mother you need.
They’re not there, creating that oh-so-familiar sound you expect beside you.

Then we realize we’re there,
at the bottom of our exhale,
without everything we need to survive,
to move, to proceed with this moment.

Yet while our surface starts its slow crumble
and we feel our feet begin to give way,
our heart in a slow-motion implosion,
something deeper is not moved by the terror,
by the fear

In between reaching and releasing there is this:
just this.

Just this nothingness,
just this everythingness,
just this radical presence,
just this.

When your next inhale graces you
try not to forget the landscape of nothingness
in your rush to climb to the top of everything

Visit it from time to time to remember
why you are here
why we are here
what really matters
while we still can.

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