The Subconscious Dishwasher

For months I have had a strong block around cleaning my apartment.

I would stand in front of the dishwasher and know that it had to be emptied in order to clear off the counter – and yet I couldn’t bring myself to do it. Different emotions including anger, frustration and fear would start to build up against the block and I’d move off to something else to avoid it all. Only to find that I couldn’t complete that next task either and I’d circle on to the next thing and back to the dishwasher again.

Even as a kid I could not bring myself to pick up after myself. Despite my mother’s best efforts to explain the benefits of doing so I simply couldn’t. I have always been oblivious to the piles of stuff around me. They’d lie there until I got worked up to a point where I could fling myself against them and purge and clean everything out in a flight of activity knowing that it wouldn’t take long to be stacked back up again.

For the first time in my life I started to notice mess more constantly – the piles of things I’d dropped in various places. For years I’d stepped around and over the piles on the floor, blind to the covered tabletops and counter tops. Only now something was starting to shift – I noticed. I noticed the block with the dishwasher. I grew agitated at the piles on the table. I wanted it all gone. To move. But wasn’t sure how to do it and so it all sat there, waiting.

It seems simple. Just pick the stuff up. Just empty the dishwasher – right? So then why was it so hard? Why couldn’t I just do it? And why did I suddenly care? Why was I suddenly noticing something I’d been oblivious to for my entire life?

I realized that I wanted to jump over the middle part of actually cleaning and just have it be done. Avoid the middle part. I could see the end but not how to get there. I contemplated getting someone in to clean but that didn’t feel like it would solve anything. No… there was something more to it.

I began to wonder do I skip over the middle part in all aspects of life? Or just cleaning? And it occurred to me that I do know how to do the middle part. I practice it in yoga every day and in every class I teach. Moving through. Beginning. Middle. End. Over and over and over again. Which means – I can do this. I know how. So why was the dishwasher different?

That helped jiggle the edges of the block a little bit.

And then it hit me – it wasn’t the dishwasher I was angry with or wanting to avoid. That mix of emotions was linked to a past trauma and wanting to skip over that traumatic event and not have to move through it.

A few days later I had a Maya Abdominal Massage and I could actually feel decades of stagnant energy move within me. It felt necessary.

At the end the practitioner said “you need to let go”.

Let go.

I realized how much stagnant energy was in my body. I could feel candida overgrowth, literal stagnant energy I’ve struggled with for years, shaking lose. And before that too, years of clinging. Not moving my body. Trying to force things to happen. Skipping the middle. Using my energy to go around or over or under or away or any direction other than through.

When I returned home I could see the piles of stagnant energy all around me – the dishwasher – a block because it allowed the dishes to pile up – keeping stagnant energy all around me. I could see the external reality of my internal state. I had been blind to it because it was part of my subconscious that I wasn’t ready to see. I had been blind to it because it was a comfort to have the internal and external mirror each other.

I felt safe, somehow, by collecting the stagnant energy so I could keep avoiding. I could keep placing the blocks there to protect myself. Perhaps every single trauma, no matter how large or small, over the course of my whole life had been collected and stored in a way that I didn’t have to move through them. I had created padding around these traumatic events and held onto every single last piece of it so I didn’t have to face the fear or emotions. So I could get to a point where moving through felt impossible – so I could trick myself into believing I didn’t have to. Except that now the same stagnant energy I’d been collecting my whole life wants to move through. It isn’t needed any more. I don’t need it any more. And it is starting to flow instead of sitting, waiting and stagnating. I am starting to flow through without needing the padding to protect me.

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