Saturday, November 13, 2010

What Michael Found

Michael is back in La Paz and we are a family of four once again.  Not that we’ve seen him much as he’s been on calls from morning to night (as I write this at 11:43 p.m. he’s on a call).  But it’s still great to have him home.  And I’m still taking care of some ‘blue’ jobs given that he’s holed up in our hull using MagicJack all day long.

Since he’s been home, however, he’s noticed several things.  First, he’s found that the kids have done really well with homeschooling.  We are now on Lesson 26 (out of 160).  Next, he found we have a new beautiful and larger wood table top that allows the kids to do their school work with much greater ease.  I had been talking about getting a new table for the entire first year, and am proud of the fact that I finally got it done. In addition, the kids have changed rooms for the second half of our cruise, each decorating and putting their own personal touches to make their new digs their own.

Michael has also found that we’ve managed to keep the boat in tip top shape – it’s clean, organized, and all the systems are working well, including our heads (marine toilets) and watermaker.  The anchor locker is still sparkly clean.  He’s also found that although we didn’t need assistance while he was gone, there were many other boaters who were looking out for us when they heard he was gone.  When he returned, he became known as the mystery man uncovered.

Most significantly, Michael found that we’ve become pretty tied to  La Paz.  I have become the Gringo community’s yoga instructor – by default, mind you – since I’m the one with the yoga DVD as well as the nerve to fill the void of yoga class organizer.  I have had to work with the board members of the highly organized La Paz cruisers club, Club Cruceros, to have use of the new *air conditioned* meeting room (we were the first!) without overlapping with any other Club activities like morning coffee hour. As a result, I announce the yoga class every morning on the VHF radio net. Michael was shocked to hear me being recognized by first name (as opposed to boat name) by the Net Operator during General Announcements – which is a sign we’ve been here a long time.  In other words, we’ve become deeply anchored in the La Paz Vortex.

What’s actually more fascinating than all of this is that it’s not surprising.  We have always been people who like to participate in the daily life and goings-on wherever we are – back home in our kids’ school, in our synagogue, in our professional organizations, in our clubs. It was only a matter of time.  That’s just who we are.  We are not sideliners, but rather prefer to play.  And we are happiest doing just that.  Are we narcissistic or simply have a need to connect and contribute?

As a rule, I think we all tend to gravitate toward the things we enjoy and do well.  We participate in life as the people we are.  When it comes down to it, we can’t fake it, or at least not for very long.  Often, these natural ‘gifts’ are so obvious to us that we don’t even know we have them, and instead think that everyone can do what we do with as much ease as we do them.  I’ve often told my clients not to resist who they are:  For example, if you are loud and a busybody, put it to work for you.  If you are a natural leader, put it to work for you.  In other words, stop making excuses or apologizing for that trait that comes so naturally to you, and instead embrace it in a positive way.   This yoga experience has given me even greater insight into this.  I have always loved to teach and being an 'expert'.  I do love being at the front of a room (even as I write this, I feel a bit embarrassed about saying that, but I'll stop apologizing...). And ask anyone who knows me well:  I love giving advice.  Life coaching, has, of course, been a great outlet for me.  I just need to find a positive outlet for all of this as I cruise. My issue with the yoga class, however, is that I am only comfortable teaching or advising on subject matters in which I can be considered an ‘expert’ and in yoga I am no expert. 

To compensate, therefore, I’ve spent unending hours reviewing a few yoga books I’ve borrowed and a DVD I have (and highly recommend: Yoga Shakti with Shiva Rea – it uses a matrix for the yoga poses so that you can choose a different routine everyday and not get bored of the same routine with beginner and more advanced options). Interestingly, today, a real live yoga instructor showed up and offered to teach the class – and it was a great class – but - at the risk of exposing my true colors - I actually missed teaching it myself.

You may note that I never said I searched the internet for yoga instruction information.  That’s also who I am:  I do not like research, I'm a very linear thinker, and I just want the right answer quickly.  I find the internet gives me information overload. I also find the whole ‘web’ of information too confusing and overwhelming for me. And how do I know which page from my search is the best one?  This research challenge completely frustrates Michael, a techie who can spend ridiculous amounts of time researching on the World Wide Web.

To sum it up, upon Michael’s return, he found that as things changed, they have, in many ways, also stayed the same.

-Barb, signing off from La Paz

1 comment:

  1. Welcome back Michael! I'm sure Barb won't mind giving up some of "your" chores that she'd undertaken, or will she?
    Enjoy the yoga Barb. I could use a good caring instructor here...