Saturday, March 14, 2015

Honoring Myself Where I Am

Photo by Justin Kral.

I cried on my mat today for the first time in a long time. 

I've been struggling with sciatica pain this week but chose to show up for class this morning anyway. Instead of participating in all of the vinyasa flow sequencing, I spent a lot of time in child's pose and rolling on my tennis ball and doing pigeon. 

I stayed true to what my body needed and I moved slowly and took breaks. 

The teacher's words were all about self compassion and honoring yourself, and I so needed to hear them. She came over at one point and asked if I was OK, and smiled at me when I said I was.  

During one child's pose, the assistant put his palms over top of my hands, and just kept them there. I was grateful for the reminder to let my community hold me up, to allow myself to be supported. Coming to the studio is a chance to be in the presence of the energy of others. It is a gift. When I first woke up this morning, I didn't want to go. I wanted to stay stuck in the fear and worry that my back hurts and I 'can't' do yoga.

None of that was true. I left the studio feeling lighter, and I got what I needed from my practice.


Yoga really is less about the poses and more about the listening. It's a practice of being kind to yourself. When Krisha Das' s voice came on the playlist I couldn't hold back some tears... that song brings up a lot of old memories of another studio I used to go in Illinois, and the way every time you walked in the door there, you were held in a space of love and kindness.

When I show up on my mat, I don't always hold myself in that space. Sometimes I am angry or frustrated, resentful of my body's inconsistencies. Today, instead of fighting my body, I listened. I let the yin part of the practice be OK. And I let it be OK to ignore what the rest of the room was doing, even in a crowded mat-to-mat Saturday morning class. When I felt self-conscious, I kindly reminded myself to let it go, and do the practice that my body needed.

This six week challenge is challenging (go figure)... and not in all the ways that I originally expected it to be. Doing my daily practice is moving old energy out of my system. I'm making a shift. Honoring myself during process makes such a difference, and it's so wonderful to know that there are other yogis supporting me in this process. 

Thank you. Thank you, yogis at the studio, and sponsored yogi team, and readers. You all mean so much to me. Sending much love to each of you and hope you're out enjoying a beautiful weekend.

Be kind to yourself :)

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