Being Breath

stories from the wilderness of everyday life

The Space Between the Fall and the Consequence

I am becoming more convinced that it is not the fall that matters, but the recovery.

The space in between.

The time after the inevitable break up or job loss.  The seconds after the thought "I can't do this" pops into your head while running or biking or trying a new yoga pose or writing a book.

The fall, the desperation, the fatigue and hopelessness...they are part of the cycle.  They are just as much a part of life as the successes, the joys and highs.

Where we get lost is in the space in between.


Taken with my cell phone while running.  The smile was for the camera...

I'm pretty sure I didn't look that happy the entire time.


I am less than 2 weeks away from my first triathlon and training in warm, humid weather.  This morning I completed a 10-mile bike ride followed by a 3.1 mile run.  This was after waking up at 5:50 a.m.  (and I am NOT a morning person).

You better believe I had thoughts - repeatedly - of quitting.  Of trying again tomorrow.  Of hitting the snooze.  

These same thoughts pop up when I hit a mid-day slump and face the decision to keep going or pop in front of the t.v.  The same thoughts occur when I hit a creative block and don't know where to go with a painting or a post or a poem.  

In the space between the uncertainty and consequence, there is possibility.

I find the more I wallow in that space, the harder it is to make a positive choice.  The longer I stay in bed or stare at a page without writing or let the thoughts of fatigue swirl in my head while running, the more likely I am to give up.  The energy of the thoughts, the darkness of the uncertainty overwhelms me.

But when I exist simultaneously within and outside of the space, a certain magical flow occurs.  When I am aware that I am not the fatigue in my legs, when I am not the fears that keep me from painting, when I am not the anger that arises from the kids' screams...I simply continue to exist.  I make the next choice....

and suddenly, I've moved over 13.1 miles and am sitting finishing a blog post.

I constantly move into that state of awareness and try to surprise myself in order to keep out of the energy-pull.  When I'm running, I'll focus on my breath and imagine my breath is as wide as the sky above me; that I'm pulling in the energy of the sun; that my legs are pulling up energy from the earth every time they kiss it.  When I'm painting, I'll focus on the music, allowing thoughts of others' impressions or fears of "correctness" drift away with the rhythm.  Or I'll stop and do some yoga or dance, letting thoughts drift through and out of my body.  There are so many ways to be outside of our negative thoughts - but we first must be aware that we are having them.  

The fears, the uncertainty, the energy-draining thoughts are ok.  Truly.  It is what happens in the space after those that makes our life what it is.

I've shared a few of mine, but I'm curious:  What is one of your rebound techniques?  One of those things that moves you from fear or inaction to a space of peaceful being?  

I'd love if you shared in the comments...we can all use a few more techniques. 

Namaste.