I have a favorite mug as I know a lot of people do. It is handmade pottery. Blue on the top, darker blue on the bottom and a brown swish through the middle. It has a petite handle and a thumb rest at the top. I bought it in Prince Edward Island on our last vacation. The design reminds me of the beach and that's why I bought it.
Recently I noticed that my mug has a crack in it. Nothing that will cause it to shatter or break or even leak my precious tea. It is just a small hairline crack that starts at the top and trickles slightly down almost to the middle. Some people would notice this imperfection and get rid of it. I like to look at this imperfection and analyze it.
I could use this vessel as an example of the vacation we had or of my practice or my life. Anything really. Our vacation was amazing and I loved it. Was it totally perfect, no. Was I content with the place we stayed, the things we did, the food we ate and my yoga practice while we were there, yes. I would have liked the vacation to be a bit longer and to have spent more time at the beach. It was a great vacation and almost perfect!
My life is not perfect either, there are cracks in that too. I find that there are never enough hours in a day to accomplish what I want. I doddle sometimes, spend too much time wasting time with TV or computer. My house always feels cluttered but I know it's because I have three children, run a day care and we are trying to enjoy life. My home is a work in progress, I am happy with it but there are things I am trying to improve or change. My relationship with my husband is not always perfect but that always gives us stuff to work on together. We have a happy life, wonderful children and are best friends, but even best friends can have their "cracks".
Is my yoga practice perfect, no. I don't think one can ever achieve the perfect practice. I come off the mat many days thinking I felt too tired, too distracted, too tight or too sore. Often my practice feels too long or not long enough. I try not to let my ego get in the way of postures, my ego feels sometimes like a crack. I know where my body used to be and where it can be again, but my mind wants it there now. However, I still try to leave my practice with a sense of contentedness, did I practice postures to my ability today? It's OK if it was not the perfect practice. It's enjoying and looking at those moments as a reflection without judgment and asking why or what?
The things we do in life, the things that make us who we are sometimes have cracks. That's OK, sometimes allowing the crack to be there lets us work on stuff or look at things in a different way. It can even be OK if the crack opens wide and allows us to see what's on the other side. Perhaps the crack is a tiny peep hole to something else?
My mug has a crack in it, but I love it and am content with it and that's what makes it even more perfect.
Jennifer is an RMT, long time yoga practitioner and teacher. Follow her musings as an RMT, yoga teacher, prenatal educator and mother of three.