I opened my eyes slightly, just enough to let some light reach my retina to distinguish the bodies sitting still next to me. I moved my eyes right and left, like they teach us in exercises but this time instead of deleting old programming, I was simply dying to see if everyone was still sitting quiet in meditation. My right leg felt numbed after only 10 minutes, my left calf blocking the blood circulation along the right one. I knew I had to move, but I did not want to be the first to disturb the quiet air with the vibrations of my movements. I told myself, when I see someone else adjusting the posture, I will do the same. For sure someone will. Two minutes, three minutes, five minutes, the time was passing, and my brain was shocked both by the pain in my leg and the distressing panic I felt as all other classmates kept sitting still, unstirred.
It’s a lie, it’s a lie, I wanted to shout. I was sure that half of them were feeling their legs tingling but they wanted to win: they were not moving. I tried to calm myself and focus on my goddammed breathing but my mind kept jumping, laughing at me for even trying and repeating me, your legs hurt, your legs hurt. Shut up, you loser, I shouted inside. If they do not move, I won’t move either. And with that I contracted my jaw so hard that my upper and lower teeth tried to carve their way into each other.
The accumulating tension was spreading along the four limbs and a light, involuntary shake rattled my body. The only thing I could focus on was the wretched state of my body, and instead of blessing and peace I was buried under a thick cloak of defeat. I finally had my eyes so wet, in a way that the fifteen minutes of eye yoga never managed to. I slowly moved, my eyes still closed as I did not want to see the happy faces around me. On all fours, I let the blood run throughout my body, then I sat down on the cushion again, legs wide in front of me, my hands on the floor on the side of my pillow.
I could finally breathe, and I basked in the thankfulness of my revived circulation, as I mentally signed off meditation class from my activity list.