Confession: I don’t practice asana as regularly as I think I should.
Truth: I am damn busy between being a mom and wife and the seven group classes and two private lessons I teach every week.
Truth: I play Candy Crush Saga, and Lexulous, and Words With Friends, and Word Chums on my iPhone whenever I have a spare moment
Truth: When I can get a nap I’ll take a nap
Truth: Babysitters are expensive
Conclusion: I probably could practice more often by eliminating iPhone games and napping. I probably could practice more often by being willing to pay a babysitter to watch my kids so that I can leave the house and attend a group class. My reasons for not practicing just don’t hold water. Why am I not practicing more?
This morning I attended Mysore practice for the fourth Sunday since the beginning of May. I missed two because of my yoga teacher training and then being sick, but other than those two times, I have committed to attending Mysore every Sunday morning so I can get at least one full practice in per week.
After teaching and teaching and still more teaching, it feels wonderful to roll out my mat and just be a student, to have my attention on my own breath and my own body instead of on the breaths and bodies of my students. There is a certain amount of relief and then exhilaration that arise when I settle into the groove of my practice and flow from pose to pose. Relief because my body begins to unwind as I bring awareness to places where I was unconsciously holding on. Exhilaration because I can feel the potential I have to grow in my practice, not just on the physical level, but on the mental, emotional, transpersonal, and spiritual levels as well.
On a few occasions, I have tried rolling out my mat at home, but it’s hard to get a complete practice in unless both kids are napping, which rarely happens. Do I need to commit to practicing outside the home? Or can I make peace with the noise and messiness and all the interruptions and practice when my kids are up and about? Perhaps a combination of home practice and studio practice…
Although I am tired, I feel peaceful. This morning’s practice gave me just what I needed. I resolved to not push my injured shoulder too much, and although I felt self-conscious about modifying my sun salutations to avoid all chaturangas, I just went with my instinct and breathed and made the practice my own. The room was full of bodies which made it very hot, and I found myself sweating and needing to take sips of water now and again. The girl next to me knew the series much more than I, so I was grateful to have her there; watching her out of the corner of my eye helped me to avoid constantly being stuck looking at the sheets they give the beginners to help them know the sequence.
I finished off with some restorative yoga and then took a shower. It was almost time for my class, and I felt ready. It’s amazing how being a student informs my teaching. I felt on point, much more aware of my students, because I had just spent so much uninterrupted time in my body, time that grounded me and helped me to remember what it feels like to be on the mat, learning.
Grateful right now. Looking forward to the next practice. May I overcome inertia, may I ignore all of the excuses my mind creates, may I melt any resistance and attend to my practice more regularly. I believe the whole world will benefit if I do!
a student learns.
when she becomes passionate enough about what she has learned,
she feels moved to share this learning with others.
she attempts to teach–
but feels lost in the sea of responsibility that is teacher
out of her element,
she asks to be taught how to teach
and this is a sacred moment indeed.
learning how to teach
her heart opens
and the earnest drive to serve is born.
the student is now the teacher,
ready to help, to guide, to inspire awakening
this role is powerful, and sometimes causes ego trips of all kinds.
let her still be a student
let her attend to her own practice
and in the netherworld between learning and teaching,
there is simply being and breathing,
and this is a sacred moment indeed.