The Gift

By Trish Deitch, February, 2013

I have a lot to be happy about: I have a thriving kid, good friends, a fun job, and I live in paradise (that is, Sag Harbor). I do yoga five a days a week, I have the best teachers, I am learning constantly. For the first time in my life, I feel peaceful. But you know how it is sometimes: sometimes you’re just blue or tweaked or crabby for no reason.

So I was standing in the middle of a Starbucks in the city the other day, with a latte in my hand, melancholy for no reason. It was freezing out, and I had back-to-back appointments, and the city was hard and loud and rude and I wanted to go home. Then, all of sudden, the 1997 Dylan song “Make You Feel My Love,” sung by Adele, came up on the playlist.

When the rain is blowing in your face,
And the whole world is on your case,
I could offer you a warm embrace
To make you feel my love.

When the evening shadows and the stars appear,
And there is no one there to dry your tears,
I could hold you for a million years
To make you feel my love.

This is a song that Colleen used to play a lot during savasana when I first started coming to Shanti.It’s schmaltzy, but it’s a love song by Bob Dylan, so it’s great too. At the time, when Colleen was playing it a lot, I was at the end of a marriage and pretty much consumed by grief. So I’d lie there in final relaxation, suffering, and I’d listen to this love song, both sweet and sad. Soon I started to associate the song with Colleen and her yoga: first she’d open us up with poses, and then, during savasana, when we were quiet and ready, she’d fill us with love.

Eventually I felt better.

So then the other day I was in Starbucks, feeling tweaked and melancholy, and Dylan’s song, which Colleen doesn’t play much anymore, came over the speakers.

I’d go hungry; I’d go black and blue,
I’d go crawling down the avenue.
No, there’s nothing that I wouldn’t do
To make you feel my love.

On the spot, I was transported to a state of savasana. On the spot, I could feel my whole body relax, and peace was there. What a surprise it was, to be so easily calmed and feel so fully nurtured, out of nowhere. But it wasn’t out of nowhere: Colleen did that: held the space and allowed me to exhale.

Happy Valentine’s Day, Coll, from all of us at Shanti.

Trish Deitch

Trish Deitch, who has made a living as a writer and editor from the very beginning, teaches meditation at Yoga Shanti Sag Harbor. She is a graduate of the Yoga Shanti Teacher Training Program, as well as the Urban Zen Integrative Therapy training.

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