I muscled my way through writing as I did with mountaineering, relying more on brute force than actual technique. In mountaineering it nearly got my killed and as a writer it kept me at the junior varsity level of blogger. I didn’t have the patience for trial and error or the discipline to sit at my desk for too long. I lacked the heart for rejection. It was easier to just do things my way and bunker down where I could stay safe, mostly unseen but somewhat content in my own narrow space.
I did the same in yoga, forcing myself into poses I wasn’t ready for, relying on will to overcome physical constraints. Will was the brains behind brute force: together, the two knocked down doors, tore out roots, pulled cars out of ditches. It was a sloppy way of getting things done. But it was anchored in grit and love. Love that builds on itself into something bigger, defies reason, consumes fear. I loved yoga, climbing, and writing: they would list each of those off at my funeral, reading from a script. And what would they say? Look: corpse pose.
Once again I walked to the lake, sat in the dark, and trained my eye on a light on the opposite shore. And thought of my last backpacking trip, how a peak can look a lot farther away but it’s often closer than you think. Same with the daily practice of yoga, trying to learn a new pose. Same with writing, the ideas can feel like roots buried underground. No one saves you when you’re stuck, no fairy or muse. Any magic is yours and yours only. The mountains will be here long after we’re gone and if we’re lucky, so will the work we create.