OK, so I wobble a fair bit when I do yoga balance poses, but I get there – eventually. And it seems a metaphor for my life.
I think that balance is found in both stillness AND movement – the trick is to find more stillness and more meaningful movement – to master the steps to dance with life. And maybe men do lead the dance most of the time! I KNOW – let me explain.
Actually I don’t so much wobble as zigzag through life, skirting from one thing to another, thoughts criss-crossing in my head, emotions flitting like butterflies in my stomach – a thousand things to do, to think, to feel. I feel a headache coming on. In other words I’m a woman!
Mr Yang has it all right (did I just type that?). Or at least he has it more right, more balanced than I do. DID. I. JUST. ADMIT. THAT!
For a start his job as a fire fighter means either fast action or inaction (I’ll let you guess the relative proportions). He’s either responding to an emergency, or kicking back in a recliner (OK there is training, safety inspections and community education involved, but you get the picture, see below). He’s mastered the art of the power-nap (now that sounds strangely balanced) in the recliner, because of course the rest of the time he’s just so busy!
Of course when he does need to act in the context of an emergency it’s with speed and a level head – a burst of fiery (excuse the pun) yang energy, combined with calm (think yin) decisiveness, whether at a house fire, road accident or other incident. After all, lives can be at stake. In other words he needs to find the perfect balance in precious moments when it really counts. And thankfully he does.
Fire fighters get down-time on the job, and a roster that gives them a fair bit of down-time in between shifts. So Mr Yang does a lot with the kids and sometimes fits in other work. But he also relaxes a lot better than I do.
I need to go off to yoga to find peace, he finds it at home, seemingly pottering about but still getting things done. He finds it in a power-nap (whereas I find it hard to sleep during the day), he finds it fishing (which I find soooo boring). He, like many men (and some women) could spend (read waste) hours fishing, supposedly for dinner (read take away fish and chips). For an ‘activity’ I reckon fishing is about as yin as it gets!
Mr Yang finds balance and peace in what to me looks likes fiddling around with his (fishing) tackle, threading sinks and lures onto lines, changing hooks, or whatever it is he does to somehow equip himself to catch the fish he never seems to catch. He makes activity a perfect balance of yin and yang.
I interrupt perfectly good yin moments with my over-active and worrying mind. I inject a yang sense of urgency into many moments when it would be far better to take things slower (as in most of the time). I often rush in my yang activity and stew in my yin reflection.
In other words, I wobble all over the place.
Now I’m not saying all women are like me (lucky for them). But by our yin nature we are perhaps prone to worry and stewing, whereas men by their yang nature are perhaps prone to anger and aggression. It is probably a proven fact (if not then it should be) that we women multi-task far better than men, while we often socialise our worries away. Yet I think most men can find relaxation in simple activity better than most women, even if they do tend to internalise their concerns.
At the end of the day finding yinyang balance is NOT about a battle of the sexes any more than it is a battle between yin and yang. It’s not about finding perfect stillness, and it is OK to wobble a bit.
Balance IS a subtle dance of energies – a tango at times, a slow waltz at others.
We appreciate the movement of the dance in the space that stillness creates, just as we appreciate the sound of the music in the silence between the notes.
So Mr Yang, can I have this dance?
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