I’m going to start this post off with a bit of a disclaimer. I’m guessing that my first yoga experience is not going to be the same as the “Average Experience” – whatever that may be.
Why do I think this?
- The class was conducted for me, and only me (and yes, I get just how special this is).
- The instructor was a dear friend and respected colleague – which means I trust her completely and felt totally comfortable in her presence, taking her guidance, and sharing the experience with her.
- The class took place on a gorgeous rooftop deck with a view of the Fraser River on a day that was the perfect amount of cool after months of too much heat for my Irish soul.
- And last but not least, because I don’t believe in “average” anything.
I’ve thought about doing Yoga for a really long time. There are a variety of reasons why I haven’t, and those reasons have changed over time. Money. Proximity. Scheduling issues. Pain. Fear. All the usual
But I’m on a mission to become more physically active, while creating some space and time where my mind can be less active. It’s an interesting challenge. For me, what I really needed was an opportunity to try something new and dedicate the time to learning and practicing while at the same time having it be for the sake of someone else. Messed up, I know. But there it is.
And in this case? My friend has just completed her instructor training and is looking for opportunities to practice. This fortunately occurred just at the same time that I had a break from my usual work schedule and BOOM – opportunity meets justification. After all, what kind of friend would I be if I didn’t volunteer to help her get the practice she wants?
I made my way the two whole blocks (
proximity) to my friend’s place. I didn’t have to work, and had several hours until I had any appointments ( scheduling issues). I’ve been feeling pretty good lately, even running again on occasion without any lasting ill effects ( pain). And since I was doing a free ( money) “practice” teaching session with a friend, there was no pressure. We were just exploring what I could do as a participant, and what she could do as an instructor, and how that would all work when we tested out those limits together. No strangers. No judgement. Nothing to risk ( fear). No more reasons excuses not to give it a try.
I took a deep breath, sat down on my cushy blue mat on the deck looking out over the river…and…came back to myself two hours later.
I know that I did things in those two hours. I breathed, I listened, I learned, I watched and I moved my body around into different postures while all those other things were happening. I couldn’t tell you where the time went, but I didn’t miss it at all. I was glad it went, and I felt like I had used it up while it lingered to the best of my ability. I seriously breathed that air.
And you know what? I loved it. Through the rest of this day I’ve felt energized, a tiny bit achy, clear in my mind, and even a little bit proud. Because it turns out I can do a whole lot more than I expected. Tomorrow? I’m going to move that bar a little further.
Because change begins now. So to take a page from a Dr. Seuss book, Today is MY day and I’m on my way!
Who knows what tomorrow will bring? After the yoga that is. And for any of you yogis-in-spirit-or-practice out there, what is it that YOU love about yoga? What brings you back to the practice day after day?