I could not do a headstand yesterday.
Let me preface this with a note: I have been headstanding for years, and while there are certain poses in my practice that I have surrendered to being unable to get into anymore (goodbye, Warrior 3) this is not one of them. This should have nothing to do with my hip. This has nothing to do with my hip as far as I can tell. This is pure metaphor in action: I am out of balance.
It is a commonly known fact among yoga teachers that to teach effectively, you have to be fully engaged in your own practice. The community is peppered with tales of the teacher who stopped practicing and then imploded and disappeared off the map. We all know it in our bodies to be true. And that's not to say that you have to be a master yogi, Queen-Of-All-You-Survey to be a good teacher; in fact sometimes the teachers who have their own challenges to deal with can be more intuitively compassionate than the gymnasts and dancers to whom the practice comes naturally.
So I'm not giving myself a hard time for being limited. But headstand? My old foe-turned-friend? The first one who showed me how to overcome being afraid of the world of upside down? Whither have you gone? Will you ever be back?
This all in the context of the upcoming date after which my practice will be banished to gonzoland for a good long while, as I relearn how to walk. And I start to wonder if I'm crazy for doing this whole thing to myself. And then I try to walk, and it hurts all the way down to my knee, and I remember that this little body's not doing that well, and left on its own will only continue to deteriorate increasingly rapidly. And if I'm very lucky I remember my gratitude list and the great good fortune I have of being born into a life that puts me in the hands of the country's best doctors who can actually do something for me.