30 August, 2010

Waiting to Exhale

Fingers work their way into my muscles.
“Let go” she tells me.
“Focus on your breathing.  You soak up air like a sponge and don’t let go.”
Within minutes, mere minutes, this woman has put into words something that I have known but am not sure how to fix.  
I am waiting to exhale.  Yet, what is it that I am waiting for?    
I am holding onto the air, not exhaling, not relaxing, not letting go…
My body begins to unwind as she moves from my head to my arms and then my legs – loosening and relaxing tissue as she moves.  She comments on how tight I am, from head to foot, always reminding me to let go and to exhale.  
Although I didn’t realize the extent of the strain my body is carrying, its taught nature doesn’t surprise me.  Throughout the last year and a half, I have experienced a barrage of external thrusts and parries; and I have faced the challenge of maintaining my voice and strength when others deny my role and my place.  While I have worked to hear and trust my inner voice again; to silence those of others; and to accept the world and its people as is emotionally, my body has waited patiently for its turn.  
Now its turn has arrived.  
Fingers pushed tension from between muscles.
Hands loosened joints and manipulated limbs.
While I worked to relax, to let go… and to breathe.  
“The most important thing you can do is exhale.”  Her words ring true.  This is a reality I have known for months – I need to exhale.  I need to breathe.  
Much work has been accomplished this year – and now it is time to focus on my body, time to release the tension and regain my flexibility; it is time for me to breathe.
I am no longer waiting to exhale!

Jan offered a wonderful post on her Tranquility Tuesday - Don't Wait to Exhale.  Thank you Jan!


Constance said...

Amaing, isn't it? We don't realize how much tension we carry until we really are allowed and able to relax.
Good for you for breathing deep - in and out, slowly nourishing body and soul:)

dadshouse said...

I wrote a massage post today, too. How funny. Synchronicity... Letting go is hard when you forget that you're holding on

Sara said...

Good for you! Breathe in your success and let it fill your lungs, then push it back out again to celebrate it with the universe.

I'm glad you enjoyed that experience:~)

BigLittleWolf said...

This is so richly written. I feel like I'm right there with you, trying to exhale as the fingers work their way through my tissues.

Funny how everything settles in our bodies, and we don't seem to remember to exhale when we can. Someone reminded me of this a few weeks back. The need to breathe in deeply, and exhale slowly.

Why is it so hard to remember? It really helps.

Belinda Munoz + The Halfway Point said...

It doesn't always come so natural, does it? Breathing techniques are taught nowadays. All my off-on (and lately on) years of yoga (and some pilates) have really helped me to remember to exhale.

Patricia said...

Wow, I had a 90 minute massage on the 23rd of August, one hour to work on the painful places and 30 minutes to let go and relax...my therapist must have said "breathe" or "I have your head (hand, knee) just let go" a dozen times....Now I have to learn to let go myself.

Nice post here....thank you
And thank you for the lovely words on my blog today...

TALON said...

You describe it so well, I feel like I'm having a massage, too. Feels wonderful, doesn't it? And having time to take deep, powerful breaths is super nice.

The Exception said...

Breathing - how interesting it is to me that we have to learn how at different times throughout our lives. I am great at the inhale but... it is that exhale that gets me every time. I loved the massage and it is nice to know that I am not alone in my exhaling...

Tess The Bold Life said...

Why do we choose to work at relaxing?!? Thanks for sharing...I think I'm going to book a massage!

Anonymous said...

Lovely! I so relate to this. As a singer, I sometimes forget to breathe. My teacher keeps say, "breathe." Congrats on exhaling and letting it all out ... And trusting your inner voice.


giulietta said...

I'm not anonymous! Somehow hit the wrong button - too busy exhaling I guess.