Last week at spin class the clock on the wall was not working. The realization of this brought up a tiny bit of panic in me. How would I know how much longer? I use the clock to mentally move myself along ("a third of the way done", "more than half way").
Riding, riding, riding...I was thinking about the timelessness of labor. How women so often plead "how much longer?". Some people do not have this need to know. For some, hearing that they are halfway through a contraction, that it won't get any stronger, does not help. But most people find it helpful. I find it helpful.
So I had to find a new way to cope...a new pain coping practice, just like labor (but with the benefit of knowing that it was only an hour, regardless of there not being a clock!).
More than ever, I lost myself in the music. Sang along in my head, matched my pace to the music. Slowed my breathing, in through the nose, out through the mouth. I was amused during David Bowie's "Space Oddity"...
This is major tom to ground control
Im stepping through the door
And Im floating in a most peculiar way
And the stars look very different today
The perfect song for timelessness and strangeness. Being alone, panic, letting go, peace. Perfect for me in this class. An apt description of labor for the mom and the baby - imagine the song from a baby's perspective!
Like labor, I couldn't tell if time was going quickly or if only a moment had passed. But in my discomfort, I found a new comfort zone...the place of being ok with not knowing. It was a relief to give over to it.
...The clock is back this week.