Featured Article from AWOB Wellness Center Newsletter September 2013
You are in the ocean and have left sight of all land behind you. All that lies before you is endless ocean and the unknown. For 54 hours you move blindly forward through shark and jellyfish infested waters. Dehydrated, and beyond exhaustion you finally reach the shallows and then solid ground, wobbly but exhilarated at what you were able to accomplish.
This incredible feat was accomplished by Diana Nyad, a 64 year old woman who swam 110 miles from Havana, Cuba to Florida on September 2nd – Labor Day this year.
As I sat contemplating what it must’ve taken to accomplish such a feat, it provided my 13 year old with the delight of being able to tease her mother. “Mom, are you crying again?” She said with a grin.
I smiled back. After all, I love the fact that I deeply feel things and I know my daughter loves this too. As I thought about Diana’s journey, I could not help but compare it to the incredible journey that each of us is making every day as we navigate the ocean of life. The fact that she finished her journey on “Labor Day” was apropos. Women since time immemorial have undergone incredible suffering in labor to bring new life into the world, and for all of us there comes a time where we undergo suffering and discomfort to bring a new aspect of ourselves to life.
Nyad spoke very clearly about her conscious choice to undergo suffering for a greater goal, “you're kind of suffering through the whole thing. So my thought was…all of us suffer heartache. All of us suffer difficulties in our lives. And if you say to yourself 'find a way,' you'll make it through."
There were many inner qualities that Nyad likely had to draw on to make it through to her goal, that
probably speak to most of us.
First of all, she had to imagine that it could be done. If we don’t believe in the possible, nothing changes.
She had to believe that the suffering she would undergo served a greater purpose. What times in our lives have we had to embrace something that was painful in order to move through it?
Although Diana had a background in endurance swimming and trained hard, success did not come overnight. Nyad’s first attempt at swimming from Cuba to Florida was back in 1978. It took her more than three decades and five attempts to accomplish this goal.
We learn from experience and our mistakes. In each so called “failed” attempt, laid the seeds for Nyad’s future success – just as our greatest obstacles in life become the gifts we have to give to the world once mastered.
She had to trust her inner instincts to know that she would be okay and that her goal was possible. Validation often does not come until we make the leap into change – trusting ourselves and the power of our inner vision.
We can accomplish more with support than we can alone. In her final successful attempt, Nyad had the help of 35 people. She did all the work, but they helped her both to keep on course and keep distractions (such as sharks) away.
This month on September 25th begins a different kind of journey, but it will draw from many of the same qualities that Nyad did and is no less heroic. Find out more about Surfing the Waves: Flowing with Change and Crisis below. (And no, I chose the name before I read about Nyad’s story.) As Nyad demonstrated, it’s never too late to change our patterns; we are capable of more than we ever thought possible; and we can do more and go father with the support of community.
Surfing the Waves: Flowing with Change and Crisis
Ever feel like you were stranded in the ocean with no land in sight or like you barely escaped a hurricane? Change and crisis can put undue stress on an already taxed nervous system, but can also be an opportunity to change patterns that no longer serve us. This 8 week class will develop skills to help keep your center amidst life’s storms while also unlocking your inner potential. It is especially appropriate for sensitive individuals who are easily overstimulated or for those who are in a place of transition. Click here to read more.
When: September 25th – November 13th, 2013
Wednesday Evenings 6:45pm-8:45 pm
Tabitha Marsh combines Massage & Acupuncture to provide natural pain relief and mental-emotional balance. She also teaches classes on Qigong & Cultivating Health & Wellbeing.