I’ve lost count as to how many times I’ve decided to return to blogging. This means that I have many comebacks, and also many “quits.” The excuses for quitting are varied but typical: not enough time, not enough inspiration, no organization, loss of interest in the topic. Many times, the verb “quit” was too strong; I just let blogs fall to the wayside. Blog abandonment. I’m guilty. Still, my love for writing conquers all, and I always return.
Returning to something you love but abandoned for some reason is challenging and affirming and humbling. I can still remember my first Bikram class after a 4-month hiatus. I had been practicing for about 5 years, and something (I can’t even really remember exactly what) made me decide I needed a break. Maybe even a forever break. I continued to practice vinyasa yoga, attended a Pilates teacher training course, continued to go to the gym, but I didn’t set foot in the Bikram studio for months. Then, one day, I wanted—no, needed—to go back. I anticipated the worst—a combination repeat of my first class and my worst class, at the same time. I got to the studio and found that my most challenging instructor was teaching. (Her cadence! Too abrupt. Her speed! Too varied. Her voice! Too loud. I wanted to run screaming.) Instead, I scribbled my name and unfolded my mat. And it was one of the ten best classes I’ve ever had. I felt amazing—I melted into postures, found new edges–and somehow, that teacher became one of my favorites.
I’m familiar with the cliché that goes something like, “things in your past are in the past for a reason.” Recently, I realized that that “reason” doesn’t always have to be that it is something that permanently belongs in your past. Over the years, I’ve “quit” and returned to hair colors, clothing styles, furniture arrangements, dietary choices. And those are just the little things, the ones that are inconsequential to the big picture. Sometimes, it feels right to return to something. Whether the return is all positive or all negative doesn’t matter. It was once a worthwhile experience, and it will be one again. There will be things you remember loving, and things you remember making you grit your teeth. There will be new things that surprise you, and new things you can predict. You might decide to abandon or quit or slowly step away again, but you might not. You won’t be repeating history; you’ll be making a new one, and possibly making a new future. In the past for a reason? Maybe. But maybe that reason is to inspire you to courageously try again.