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Calm in Crisis

It took me over ten years to understand how to relax in my Taoist Tai Chi® practice, and on March 18th, 2022, I was able to apply it to life. In the Rocky Mountains when the highway turned from wet to ice, I was coming over a hill on a curve. As soon as I hit the ice, my car went into a 360-degree spin, bouncing off the opposite snowbank, and back again, to hit the bank in my direction. Unknowingly, I relaxed into the car’s movements... 

The Fung Loy Kok board’s instruction to do self-practice has been a boon for me during Covid – having the time and direction was motivational. After developing a daily training time, my body and mind awareness was deepened. My focus was strengthened and I cultivated a better alignment to give room for hip pain. A quote I read says it well, “Daily renewal is called making one’s virtue replete.”

On March 18th, I was involved in an accident in the Rocky Mountains, when the highway turned from wet to ice. Coming over a hill on a curve, as soon as I hit the ice, my car went into a 360-degree spin bouncing off the opposite snowbank, and back again, to hit the bank in my direction. Unknowingly, I relaxed into the car’s movements. It took me over ten years to understand how to relax in my Taoist Tai Chi® practice, and even more to be able to apply it! After stopping, I got out and assessed my car, very focused, picked up my bumper and grill to put in the car, and headed out slowly. Not only was my body trained, but my training has been teaching my mind to concentrate, and react to ‘life’ by kind of forgetting myself, looking clearly at the situation, and reacting calmly.

As I was heading out slowly on the highway shoulder, I looked into the rear-view mirror to see a truck trailer full of rocks sliding towards me sideways. I knew I had to relax for the impact, then there was a second. Time moved very slowly. There were two semi-trailer trucks, following each other, carrying fist sized rocks, who came over the hill on the curve, saw me, and put on their brakes. I’m assuming both trucks spun into 360-degree spins. The first hit my rear and flipped, the other hit the front of my car and ended up facing the opposite direction.

In the silence that followed, I checked the situation: I was breathing, but not bleeding. Slowly and carefully, I released the seat belt and looked at the car. The driver of one truck came over the snow bank, couldn’t open the doors, but looked in the back passenger window, which had no glass. I told him I could crawl out that window, which I did, a very flexible old lady in her 70’s.

The ambulance took me to the nearest town which had a hospital where I waited for three days for a ride home. I had one seatbelt bruise. During that precious time of stillness, I dealt with the pain of whiplash, relaxing many times laying on my back with a straight spine (sleeping meditation?). On the second day I did a few foundations to let my body energy move, soon I was able to do a relaxed, gentle set with a very straight spine and alignment. I thank God, the gods, and Taoist Tai Chi® practice for my survival. I am a walking, talking Taoist Tai Chi® arts promotional ad to all my family and friends.

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