AN END TO A BEGINNING

Buckle seat belts kids, this is gonna be a long post…

Yesterday was my last day at teacher training with Three Sisters Yoga.  It was hard to meditate (we start out our weekend mornings meditating for 30 minutes) both days.  On Saturday I was teaching my co-students for 15 minutes.  On Sunday, most of us were presenting our karma yoga projects.  Both mornings my mind was abuzz about what I was going to do and say.  I tried to meditate but the planner in me would not shut up!  The 15 minute class went well.  I have to backup to define well.  Last weekend I received some constructive criticism that I wrote about in my last post.  I wasn’t loud or confident enough.  I took it to heart, it weighed me down.  I brought it up to our master teacher, Jen Whinnen (whom by the way is AWESOME) and she set my heart at rest.  I was telling my mom that night, you know how you hear what you didn’t even know you needed to hear from someone?  In a nutshell she basically said that I am enough, if I’m not confident, so what?  Teach until I am.  Keep going, keep trying.  She told me to stand up right there and teach everyone tree pose.  This was the last thing I wanted to do.  She said to stand up taller.  She said, tell them how to do the pose as if you are doing the pose.  C L I C K.  I immediately forgot all of my weakness in teaching and became excited about telling them how I do the pose.  Bravo.  You got this girl past a hump.  I related the class on Saturday to how I would move through the class.  I also spoke the mantra of: C A N.  And I read a quote about fear at the end.  I might as well speak to the fear of teaching while I’m teaching right???  While I read the quote I felt myself tearing up.  It was:

“I will not die an unlived life.  I will not live in fear of falling or catching fire.  I choose to inhabit my days, to allow my living to open me, to make me less afraid, more accessible, to loosen my heart until it becomes a wing, a torch, a promise.

~Dawna Markova

I bumbled a couple of times, still wasn’t loud enough, and forgot/was afraid to walk around the room.  At one point I paused and everyone waited expectantly and I had a anxious moment thinking, they’re all relying on ME!  But I did many things well, and I have new faith and hope that I will get better and better.  Something was planted deep inside me somehow.  I want to help people do yoga.  It’s that simple, no bells.  I have a desire to be a yoga teacher.  These declarations make my soul feel light.  I just have to finish the rest of my coursework and blogging commitment, and then folks, I can get my official certification.  We went over the business of yoga the last weekend too, aka $$$.  I ascertained that I will definitely need to maintain a secondary income + yoga.  Why?  Because financial insecurity freaks me out.  And that’s okay too.

On Saturday, straight out of the studio I got into a car accident.  I’ve only been in one other one in my life, and that was in like 2005.  It was strange to feel that metal on metal connection.  I had a hard time driving around today, I felt on guard the whole time.  Yes, I said driving, so obviously my car is drivable which is a good thing.  To go back to the beginning, I was in the most left handed lane on a four laned, one wayer.  The car in the lane to the right of me decided to make a left hand turn.  YUP.  Right in front of little ole me.  I tried to slam on my brakes but he was just too close.  The kicker?  Out pops this tall older man wearing a clerical collar.  He was a charismatic episcopalian priest.  Wha…?  We had an interesting conversation about a higher power (his much different than mine, of course), addiction, and faith.  He was nice enough to stay with me till the tow came.  It was strange.  I was initially shocked by the accident, but rolled with first things first after that.  AA has just taught me to do the next right thing.  I was bushwhacked by the time I got home two hours later.  I really missed H.   It will be so nice to spend more time with him.

I presented my karma project on Sunday, it has been an effort over the past month, I found a space to hold a mama’s support group at the local library.  I wanted to do some service work that was close to my heart.  First meeting this Friday, I hope some mamas that need a break and some companionship will show up!  After I presented, my head was in the clouds.  I kept trying to pull myself back to earth, I wanted to be very present since it was our last day together at the studio.  It was the last time we would all be just what we had been these past 6 weeks.  That right there will never be reproduced!  I wanted to soak in it.  We went to Pho to all eat together.  I seriously couldn’t believe how well we all got along.  I had not felt that easy with other women since my peeps in Long Beach.  It was such a rich feeling, I felt very grateful.

My head kept floating.  I just kept thinking about seeing my parents and H, about them seeing where I had spent so much time.  All the family members arrived.  It was great to see everyone with their loved ones.  There were a bunch of kids!  H wanted to be in the middle of the action, he doesn’t have much fear in that department.  He’s still small though, so we had to watch him.

Our teacher had us introduce one another to our loved ones which was cool.  We all had nice and loving things to say about each other.  She christened us with our own set of mala beads.  I used mine already.  Namaha Lakshmi.  Abundance.  I will seriously miss the camaraderie we’ve all built together, but I will also seriously love having more time back.  A couple of the women are moving out of OR soon.  I’ll miss our teacher.  I’ll really miss her knowledge.  We had a walking, breathing yoga manual next to us!  Google has nothing on her.  And I’ll miss her giant wing of compassion she spread over us these past weeks.  Hold the space, she said.  She definitely held the space we were in.

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This was the light in the bathroom, I just had to include it. Too cool.

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Peace, love, and namaste.

Published by Liz Brower

I've practiced yoga since 2006, I stumbled into a class at my local gym. I didn't really "get" yoga, I wanted to do all of the poses to the max, I didn't focus on breathing, and I was very competitive. A year later I quit smoking and my mom purchased a three month unlimited to a local studio. I fell in love with yoga! Plus the metaphor was strong, my lungs began to repair, I could take really deep inhales without coughing! I later began to go to a free outdoor yoga classes in downtown Long Beach, CA that was also affiliated with a donation based studio. Yoga was fun, affordable, accessible, and outside! I loved it. I started practicing at home by myself. I started meditating. Right after I found the classes at the gym stopped drinking alchohol. My sobriety and yoga have intertwined ever since. They compliment each other amazingly and I am so grateful for them both. I stopped practicing yoga after getting pregnant and being caught up with the taking care of a newborn in 2013/2014. When he was 9 months old I realized that I really wanted to redirect myself back to yoga. I also had the seed planted in my mind while driving home from Christmas break, why don't you go do a yoga teacher training?! I started practicing yoga at a local studio and began scouring the internet for a teacher training program. I found Three Sisters Yoga, a lovely program, based out of NY & PDX. I was more than motivated to teach, I started teaching some free yoga in the summer of 2015 at a local park. I continued after that with an internship at the same studio I had signed back up with at the beginning of the year. I quit my day job. I hit the pavement, scouring for yoga gigs that would hire a newbie. I found a job and began to teach! Now I am navigating the great balance of being a single mom, a yoga teacher, and doing my best to trust my higher power with my future. I love to teach and practice vinyasa, but also know what it's like to be drawn to slower types of yoga due to injury or body type. I feel a special affinity for yoga new comers and like to teach practice at all different levels. Thank you for taking time to read a little more about me and I wish all of you the best in your own individual yoga practice. ~Namaste!

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