So here we are, at the end of year four. Two qi gong forms, four tai chi forms, some druidic work (which I keep failing to report, but it’s happening). And about 53 minutes: 5:17 am to 6:10 am. Not bad for a middle-aged guy.
No real problems to report, no real challenges in the form, no real difficulties getting up and getting to work. Some sense of Air and Earth today, not so much Fire or Water or Spirit. Going back to the Tai Chi Poem this morning, I find that the bigger challenge is not so much doing the form, as going deeper. Yet when I go all the way back to Tai Chi Day 1 of Year Four, I set a goal of doing an hour. I’m not yet doing an hour. But I’m a lot closer to doing an hour, and a lot closer to getting more out of that hour.
In past Day 366’s (Year 3) (Year 2) (Year 1), I’ve written about the experiences of feeling interdependent with others as a result of my tai chi practice. I’ve written about the experience of feeling that this is today’s practice, and let tomorrow’s practice be tomorrow’s. I’ve written about what I expect to have happen tomorrow, or next week. I’ve written about the changes that tai chi has brought to my life.
Today, I don’t have anything like that. I wish I did, but I don’t. If I didn’t have to write some sort of notice that today was Day 366, I’m not sure that I would notice that it was a milestone of sorts at all. It’s just tai chi practice.
And actually, maybe that’s the point. At the beginning of this adventure, four years ago, I called it Taiji, and the goal was simply to do tai chi every day for a year. Not get fancy, not go deep. Just do it. It was awkward and difficult, and the biggest challenge was getting up to do it. After a while, the challenge became not, “how to do it” but “how to do it better” or “how to do it more effectively.”
And now, it’s “this is today’s practice.” Some days it’s good, some days it’s bad, some days it’s just-ok. But it gets done — I do it — because I choose to, because it’s built into my life and my work, because it’s part of the labor I’ve established for myself.
And that’s enough. As ever, I’m grateful for Deb Castellano’s “New Year, New You” program four years ago, which helped get me started.