I can feel the warm drips sliding down all over my face. There are even a few slipping down my chest. The thought occurs to me that contrary to the saying, I have never seen a pig sweat quite as profusely as me before.
Partly, the copious amount of fluid being released from my body has to do with the high heat and humidity of the week. But the sun has not yet risen for the day and the air has yet to hit the stifling point.
I would wipe the sweat from my face; at least from the drops coming down from my forehead into my eyes, if my hands were not glued to my sides by the weights I am carrying.
Another thought that enters my mind. I must be crazy. I mean, who does this…..and enjoys it? Me.
Previously in my life, I have commanded my body to work for me. Grasping for control, I have reviled in the sense of power I received by forcing my body to submit to my will.
But my body does not fall prey to my control issues alone. Often it is the part of me that I beat up because of how the world beats on me. I have days when I am desperate to prove my value through the world’s exchange: external aesthetics. And my body, along with my soul, pays the price.
Other times, working my body as hard as I do has been to prove something to myself. That contrary to what I might have originally thought, I can do it. I am more capable than I give myself credit for.
But more and more in my life, sweating is less about making my body be or do something I think it should. Increasingly, I have a sense of gratitude for how my body is connected to the rest of me. I appreciate the release that comes from moving my body. From pushing my muscles. From breathing hard. From sweating.
Because something mysterious is taking place when all of that is happening. Emotions that have been trapped inside of me are finding a way out. I don’t exactly understand it, even as I experience it.
I simply know it to be true: we are connected human beings. Our minds and our bodies and our emotions and our spirits are all connected together to form us as whole people. And somehow through moving my body, my feelings escape and I settle within myself.
So as I feel the beads fall, I say a quiet word of thanks. I am grateful for physical outlets. Letting out what is inside and living in the mystery of how that happens as each drip trickles down my face.
Moving my body can be so much more about freedom than slavery.