I've studied the physical exercises for ages, and yet some of the advanced positions were left out of my teachers' repertoires. It didn't matter in the least. There are countless other positions to master, there is lots to read and study, and Life itself throws loads of experiences to endure, grow and ride through, and learn from. I had no interest or calling to do the handstand. Until late last year. When on my own in a brand new city in a state I had never been to before, with nothing but me and the four walls of my makeshift studio, I thought let's do it.
It is so humbling to put yourself in a position, either on or off the mat, where you really aren't sure what you're doing. It also keeps teaching and instructing fresh. You remember what it was like not to be able to do some basic positions, you can empathize with your students more.
At the end of the eighth month of practicing, on a day of swimming and sunning, on the day of this Blue Moon, up I go. I've learned that to do the handstand means you have to do falling really well. You have to get to the point when you are comfortable in falling - legs akimbo, torso twisting - and when your mind has accepted that learning to fall is essential for the body to have the confidence to rise up through hands.