Ten years ago today I unrolled my yoga mat in my sunny studio apartment in South Beach, grounded myself in breath, and dropped into a backbend that would change my life forever.
On the path from standing to a beautiful arch, a hiccup of fear jutted me slightly off course, and I hit the edge of a futon frame with my forehead on the way down. A bump sprang to life smack dab on top of my third eye where it remained for days after the pain had subsided.
That bump became the bullseye that caught my husband’s eye at a random party later that night.
He thought I was so cool to walk into a stranger’s house with a big bump in the middle of my head, and pestered me all night long until he kissed me suddenly, and sparks flew. It was bizarre that I even attended that party, because it was just a small group of friends getting together around the guise of a blue moon. A telescope was set up in the backyard by the pool and I did gaze through it at the white moon full of gray craters. A blue moon is real though. They occur when there is a second full moon within a single calendar month. Blue moons come along roughly every three years. There wouldn’t be another blue moon until a month after Andres and I had married. The next one will be this time next year. That’s right eleven years from the day I met my husband on a blue moon. (Did I mention my birthday is 11-11?)
The woman who brought me to the party (What was her name? Kim?) didn’t become my friend. The man who’d invited her to the party was her real estate agent who’d pitied her devastation after her recent divorce. He was friends with the hosts and would pass away from cancer a few months later never knowing that eventually two new lives would be created in the wake of his casual invitation.
This morning I can’t help but think back to the girl who unrolled her yoga mat ten years ago. I have grown so far from who she was as she carelessly hurtled herself through the world in desperation to find LOVE. In other ways, I have shrunk from the fearless shadow she used to cast. Right now, I am in the process of working my way backwards to her in order to move forward in my life.
Had I known the grief that I would go through as a result of meeting the man with the bump on my head, I would have stayed home with an icepack and a chick lit novel that night. Had I known that beyond that grief would lay my entire future laid out on a silver platter: great love, marriage, two beautiful sons, I would not have missed my mark on that backbend. I would have nailed it and attended the party unmarked, and perhaps unremarkable, to Andres.
It all just seems so fated, it’s ridiculous.
I used to believe in destiny so much ten years ago when everyday I scanned the horizon looking for signs my life was going to turn out happy. I would buy every women’s magazine in the month of November just to read the extended horoscopes for Scorpios. Of course, I only paid mind to the signs that pointed in the direction I wanted to head, and completely ignored all the red circles beseeching me DO NOT ENTER.
The woman I am now thinks less about destiny and more about choices, and how sometimes you make one and suddenly a whole row of dominos fall and twist and topple over and there was no way of seeing where it would lead.
In this vast universe there is room for both fate and choice, I suppose.
This morning my two little boys unrolled their first yoga mats, purchased yesterday so they could attend the afterschool yoga class I will teach at their school. Jack proudly ran through the postures he already knows while Max invented one called Giraffe Pose. When they start bouncing on the trampoline out back, I will unroll my mat as I did ten years ago. Will I dive forward, plunging deep inside the mysteries of self, or careen backwards, cracking my heart wide open into an upside-down world?
I do not know.
I can’t wait to find out. I can’t wait to tell my date tonight what happened.
Yes, that’s right, I have a date tonight, which I will attend smiling,
bump or no bump.