I wanted to write a post last week, but my soul and mind just haven’t been there.  It made me remember that I really have to think of this space as a open, free, honest space.  It’s not all about the good, but about the bad too.  Although I do think I needed more perspective (which involves TIME), so it’s probably good I took a longer break.

My right hip is on fire.  I have self diagnosed a wonky IT band on that side since teacher training.  I’ve spent much time rubbing the heck out of it with this really cool stress ball my parents had in the house.  I had noticed that the slight pain went away when I didn’t practice.  I’ve known that as much as yoga can save your life, it can injure the hell out of you.  This is why proper alignment is so important.  I don’t know how or when the injury occurred, but it somehow did.

Well, I’ve been going full steam for a while with an apprenticeship, practicing, writing lesson plans, and now that I’ve been teaching actual classes out in Milwaukie, I sometimes have been doing intense Vinyasa for three hours straight per day.  My friend began to teach a free class there as well, so one day I taught for an hour and did two hours with her while she taught me.  That day I felt a strange heated and grinding sensation in my hip but I ignored it.  The next day I wrote up a new plan and practiced.  I scaled back a bit, my hip was bothering me.  The next day I taught just a half hour private.  My hip hurt.  I didn’t do half of the movement.  I always tell students to listen to their own bodies and back off if anything feels painful…Time to listen to my own advice.

I spent time researching hip pain.  Here’s the thing:  I don’t like going to the doctor.  Before I see any well meaning comments, I promise ahead of time that in this case I will.  The conclusion I came to for the time being was that all of the tiny fascia, tendons, and muscle on the inside of my hip needs some time to heal.  I need to STAY OFF OF IT!  I can see all of you rolling your eyes, don’t try to hide it.

Simultaneously it seems I received more feed back from my mentors at my apprenticeship.  I have fulfilled all of my hours there, I taught a demo class, and then I received feedback.  I do have to say here that as much as I know this feedback will only make me stronger and will someday not be so smarting to my sensitive teaching soul, I am really depressed by it.  Grow or go seems to be the only two decisions.  I doggedly tape the Sanskrit translations in the kitchen.  Even though I feel so sad that I am not where I want to be yet, I still am not giving up.  One of the critiques was to get off the mat.  To perhaps stick with Basic Hatha for a while until my teaching chops grow more (Hatha moves slower that Vinyasa so it will give me more time to gather my words).  May be just what my sore hip needs.  It feels better for now, but I still want to give it more rest.  Instead of practicing for hours I will have to do only the gentle non hip stuff and visualize the rest.  We’ll see what happens when I teach!  I’m grateful for the gig in Milwaukie while I wait to audition again at the studio where I apprenticed.

Another piece of advice, talk in a natural voice.  You have no idea how many curse words that inspires within me.  I can’t get out of that sing songy way of teaching.  I can’t!  It drives me crazy.  And before anyone accuses me of being too hard on myself, believe me if I could get away with getting jobs with the lilts I would!  I’m currently reading this book called Dreaming in Hindi by Katherine Russell Rich.  I believe it is telling me what I need to hear so I won’t give up on the yoga teaching (I realistically believe I am hear what I want to hear, but so what if it helps me?).  Stretch your mind a bit and think of teaching as learning another language.  She says,

    To learn a second language, you have to be willing to give yourself up, the self encoded in your first one.  You are no longer a person who speaks with facility and authority.  You are less than what you were as a child: You cannot transact a phone call without help, discuss matters more complex than the color of fruits and vegetables.  You cannot signal who you are.  Most of us, by the time we’re adults, speak in so many words.  We convey information through tone: I am sad, or I am displeased, or Is it not clear?  I am important.  Our speech acquires layers so that directness, when employed, has power through force and rarity:  “I don’t like what you did.”  But at the beginning in learning a language, you can only be direct.  You can say “Tea is required here,” not “Can I get a cup?” -a vast difference in terms of your popularity.  In half language, you’re half what your were, half and overgrown child.  You speak like a child, are received as a child.  In this other state, you lose abilities.

So I’m pretty much a weirdo woman toddler yoga teacher.  Much like my son who talks like Curious George, mouthing loud noises, but never making any real sense.  I may dream yoga, but I’m not yet fluent in it.  I remember my master teacher asking me what I feel confident to teach, confidence being one of my first hurdles.  My job, I answered.  I could teach anyone my old day job confidently and naturally.  I knew it in and out.  I would not have trained anyone in a sing song voice!  That would have been ridiculous.

So what do I do with all of this information.  The only response I have at this time is to wait and pray.  Do what’s in front of me which is teaching in Milwaukie and putting all of these critiques at the forefront of my teaching.  But also to let it go and try to find the joy as well.  And to figure out what’s ailing my right leg.

It rained like mad on Halloween, like it did not stop all night.  My mom, H and I just went around the block, his head and bear suit got drenched.  He was a little bewildered, being only 19 months, he did not really understand what it all meant.  He did enjoy eating candy (only a couple of pieces) and had a fit the next day because we would give him any!  On to Thanksgiving and Christmas, I wish I could make time go slower, this is my favorite time of year.



Yes, that is a girl dressed as a cake. At H’s cousins dress up party at their preschool.

We’ve been getting some especially bright sunrises:



And H has perfected Adho Mukha Svanasana (Downward Facing Dog), only he likes to keep balance on his head instead of his hands:


I appreciate any good vibes sent regarding my teaching crisis.  I wish you all a very cosy, peace filled begin to this November.

Xo & 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!

2 thoughts on “A NEW LANGUAGE

  1. Hey Liz,
    I highly recommend West Chiropractic. Nic and Alissa are wonderful young people I really like!
    If your pain continues, they are the folks to see. The office is on Boones Ferry behind Albertsons in Wilsonville.


  2. Yes! I love what you’ve said here about the voice! Our voice is truth, our throat chakra rules the truth we speak and it is connected intimately to our hearts. Allow yourself to speak on the tambour of your hearts true sound, meditate on the connection between the two centres. You will always be understood in this way, even if you speak as a toddler 🤗 even if a couple curse words slip out (we don’t mind)!! In every class I’ve ever been, I have appreciated most the teacher who speaks naturally, I feel they are being real with me and showing their raw, true selves! This inspires gratitude and space for all to go there with you. Thank you for your honesty and truth here in you words 🙌🏼✨🌟🙏🏼 Pranam from my heart (and throat) to yours xo

    Liked by 1 person

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