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The swelling in my knee went down after several weeks of my docile non-aikido-or-anything-as-dynamically-moving good behavior bond. Yippee! So now I'm back and lovin' it.
Sure, it was only a few weeks of non-activity, officially. But those of you that noticed the cavernous silence from this end (you know who you are...!) probably also connected the dots and figured out that something like for the last 6 months I'd been renovating my headspace and coming to grips with a multitude of issues. Like, if my knee pain still keeps growing exponentially and it's not an enjoyable feeling sitting in the injured corner during class, at what point is it still worth coming and training in aikido? Or, knowing that I'll need to disengage with aikido at the end of the year and believing that I wasn't getting much of the non-physical connection with my peers and instructors, at what point was it practical to encourage my desire to wane? Little things like that, and I'm frankly quite honored (and a bit embarrassed, to be perfectly candid) that you all got the complete insight to the whole sordid train wreck.
But I started this post on the positive, so it's evident that I started again. But not only did I start again but I reconnected again wholeheartedly. Wow, I just did not expect that to happen like a light switch! But when I went to the first class, I saw my rhino differently. A tougher shell than I'm accustomed to, to be sure, but also a great subtly in displaying the hues of relation. A quick glance back after every 'charge' moment. And a great loyalty to the pack.
I also found that as my thoughts have changed and meandered, so have my relationships and connection points wioth those around me. I look to certain people for different things now, and the peers I connect with have changed as life experience and generic issue-grappling has kept changed my outlook on the world.
My other significant revelation was how all the emotional turmoil/ other mental rubbish can all just fall away if you just throw yourself into the sensations of class. I found the thrill of connection, and ecstasy of flow that I'd been sorely lacking for a while now.
I could even walk after going to two training nights back-to-back. Awesome.
Just as you don't let your emotions determine the course you take, I shouldn't let them determine whether I go to class or not, because emotions are the simplest things to change in the world and they're usually quite different by the end of class. It's only stopping and sitting aside and having too much brooding time that gets my headspace into trouble.
In hindsight, maybe a big thing that's been holding me back is an ego problem? As one of the only girls, and the longest-training one there for now, I think I've had a big hang-up about appearing to be a weak girly-girl kind of person who couldn't keep up with the boys. Like they wouldn't respect me or the girls to come after if they had to 'dumb down' their technique to deal with the female with delusions of resilience. Except... the body I've got falls apart quite easily, so that obviously wasn't factored in too much. Darnit! Blaaaaargh!! All this senseless mental anguish, gah!
Life has ebbed and simplified again. Thank God! So now I'm back, a bit scruffier and worn than before, but for the better - while it lasts until December anyway, and then we'll just have to see what comes around the corner.