There are many reasons why I look forward to my yoga class, but the thing that always brings me back over and over is its ability to help me find my place.
By the time I arrive at my class, I usually feel emotionally and physically scattered from work and whatever is going on in my wacky life. I always start my days with the best of intentions and I try to use my time wisely but somehow things unravel and then I find I am trouble shooting some unexpected crisis. Of course, there are some days when things go more smoothly than I expected but those are few and far between.
There has been a lot going on this summer and it has caused me to stop and re-think about where I am and what direction I want to go. Is where I am right now okay? Do I want to go in a different direction? Why do I feel disconnected?
One fabulous event that started this questioning of myself was my son’s beautiful wedding earlier this summer. It was more than a wonderful day and I love my daughter-in-law very much but the day was bittersweet for me. I always imagined that my son’s father would be there to share the day with me and that just wasn’t to be.
You would think since he died twelve years ago that I would be prepared for the way it would feel but I wasn’t. It just wasn’t what I pictured. And I think I also thought that after all this time that I would meet another man who would catch my interest; someone I would want to make a part of my life but that hasn’t come to be. I could have invited a guy friend to come to the wedding but then I thought about all the logistics and emotional drama of the event and decided against it.
Not that I didn’t enjoy myself on my son’s wedding day. Oh yes, I definitely did. I drank in the joy of my son and his fabulous wife and how sweet they are together! Many beautiful moments are permanently captured in my memory. I am so very happy for them and for the life that they are starting to build together for themselves.
But for me, the time since this personal milestone event, coupled with other personal and work developments, has made me feel as though I am starting from square one.
I’ve been trying to take a bit of my own advice since then about breaking things down into smaller more manageable ways of handling life and sometimes it feels as though it is getting better but not consistently.
And that’s where my therapeutic Mother Yoga practice comes in.
My thoughts can be all the place. I need to do this. I need to do that. I need to call or email or text this person and then I should remember to drive here and pick up that important thing I ordered. What can I do to change the outcome of a particular relationship? Why can’t things just quiet down? My pinball thoughts happen a lot, bouncing of any wall they can find.
Even before class begins and I am unrolling my yoga mat on the floor, I am thinking to myself that it won’t work this time. Of course I want my class to help me find calm down but for some reason I’m not always sure. I find that something, some feeling or thought, is nagging me in the back of my brain before class begins or I don’t know if the class will really help me chuck these impatient feelings that sometimes visit my weak body and mind.
And you know what? Yoga proves me wrong. Every time.
Every single time.
The breathing, the stretching, the gentle but consistent progression of poses always takes me to a place of awareness and relaxation.
It is truly amazing to me. If I could take a class every day I would. I have tried to meditate at home and have had varied results. I will continue to work at this at home because I know that in the long run I need to learn how to do this for myself.
Why? Because, as Wellness Warrior, author and motivational speaker Kris Carr says, when you understand your mind, you can harness its power to achieve more than you imagined possible.
The practice of yoga helps me take that my scattered inner person and bring her into a quiet zone to settle her thoughts and center her thoughts and help her remember where she is. It helps me focus; it helps me heal.
Yoga also helps me build resilience within myself and in the knowledge that life has its own rhythms. It’s own time for things to happen.
And most of all, it always reveals to me, in its subtle and powerful way, my precious place in the universe.