Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Swimming Home

Sexy goggle face!

You know what, you guys, the sun is coming out like crazy these days and for the most part I'm happier than a clam.  Because the sun and me we are besties 4-eva.  But  my other nagging friend "anxiety" is always there, lurking.  Even when I'm glowing with the joy of the every day sun there is that little nagging, scary worrier in the back of my brain.

Usually I can beat her back with gratefulness, and work, and friends and love and just be present in the moment.  But lately she's been creeping up on me more and more.  The work stress is a lot.  The questions about the future.  Future family, future jobs, future life.  Am I ever going to be doing something else, be somewhere else, be able to travel, have kids etc etc etc.  My brain.  It can go for days. And some days it just nags and nags and nags.

Work picked up like insane crazy in March.  And my gym routine went out the window.  Along with any kind of relaxation or normal sleeping patterns.  And then we went to NY and my anxiety and sleeping patterns went straight, on the express train, to hell.  But quietly my muscles were talking to me.  Along with my spirit.  Move Sarah.  Just move.  You're so worried about being stuck...then get up and move.  But the gym takes too much time, and then I have to shower and then etc etc.

My gym membership also allows me to use the pool.  What you may not know about ms. sarah is that she used to be a swimmer.  A bonafide water polo player/swimmer/diver.  If it was a sport in the water, I played it.  I've been a water baby from birth.  I loved swimming and would stay in the pool or the ocean until my lips turned blue.  I love(d) the water.  

And yet I probably haven't been in the pool in years.  Maybe to splash around a little bit.  But it's probably been nearly 10 years since I've swam laps.  Since i've moved my body up and down the pool.  And when I thought about going back to the pool I was filled with insane fear.  Inexplicable irrational fear.  

So it took a couple of months of self coaxing.  (And coaxing from SP)  But on Monday I finally put on my big girl pants (or bathing suit rather) and went to the pool during lunch.  

And it hurt.

Every muscle screamed with lack of use.  My breath burned in my lungs.  It was pathetic you guys.  

But it was amazing.  My body knew exactly what too do.  The slow slap of my hands entering the water, my arms stretching out in front of me.  My breath.  My rhythm.  It was deliberate and mindless simultaneously.  And I could just feel the anxiety wash off my shoulders.  I could feel my mind move back into my body, and out of that crazy anxiety space.  The sensation of the water around me. The sun and the slight wind.  That was it.  Just me.  In the sacred space of the water...surround by nothing. I could have swam on forever.  Except my shoulders wouldn't let me, paying for the years of neglect.

But I went back today.  And it was even better.  It was glorious.  I just slipped into the water and everything melted away.  And it didn't hurt as badly.  And I just released it all, everything, into the water.  Every moment, and fear, and naggy nag.  I shed a "skin" of worry with every lap.  I pushed it until I was absolutely going to be late back to work, just to have another minute.

I can't even explain it.  It's a feeling I haven't had in a long time.  The serenity of the ache in my arms and the feeling that it isn't for anything.  Its not even about losing weight or exercising or anything.  It's about therapy.  It's about not talking and just losing myself in the movement and the feelings and the repetitions.  It's about being home in the water...and also in myself.

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