New Year's Day, 2016.
I ran three 5km park runs one after the other, from 7am to 10am.
Lots of tall lean people, chunky mesomorphs and mums with pink gym gear. The last three k's were particularly poignant as I faced the old existential dilemma whilst my knees throbbed, my head pulsed and I barely stayed the course. Why am I doing this? Who really cares? What does it matter?
Running is good like that. So is yoga. But running has registration and online times so you can prove you did it and others can verify that you actually did - if you register - and I didn't - so there is no proof that I actually did the 15k. Except I know I did it and that should be all that matters.
Yoga has no registration or milestones or t-shirt that you can buy that proves you have done fifty classes or whatever. It's just that silent acknowledgement each morning as you uncurl on the mat and you can perceive the energy in the room from the other yogis and yoginis.
Same with meditation - at the end of each phase, there is no badge or lapel bar or rise in status - it's just a deeper immersion up the spiral of awareness.
It's as though I was planted among ego and status soil and my life's goal is to grow and lean across out of my plant pot and into a soil of self content, confidence and inner acceptance. Without that urgency and pressure to be seeking and achieving and getting bits of paper to prove where I have been or what I have done.
Now, my cycle is to actively seek out that which is not measured or assessed or a step towards something - and instead dissolve into the purity and flow of the process simply of and for itself. It's mindfulness and meditative all at once and there are no signifiers of success or attainment - except for some faint muscle definition, or the clear alabaster of the whites of my eyes.
The ballet? It's just clean and powerful and complete - 2 mins in if you are patient. Namaste.