On Being Kind

Week Three. I’ve been a little quiet with blogging this week in comparison to the first two weeks for yoga teacher training, in part because, well, helluuuu, it’s Week Three. My mind is officially asana-ed into mush at this point. That’s not to say that I’m not enjoying myself. Wait – is that too many negatives? Seriously, you guys. Mush.
While I haven’t had the full on meltdown of last week (being able to tell myself that I’m now on the downhill slide of things helps), I’m still pretty spent, physically and emotionally. There have been some super awesome moments this week (manifesting, although a weepy process, was beyond great) and some big challenges, too. Yesterday we spent the afternoon working on arm balances and for a girl with a super wonky wrist and virtually no serratus or tricep (not triceratops!) muscles, that’s a pretty big stretch (pun intended). I just don’t have the strength, or let’s be real – the trust – to do those poses. I don’t believe that I can do them without getting hurt and setting myself further back than I feel my left wrist has already taken me. That’s just how it is. Is most of that in my head? Perhaps, but there’s also the issue of pride. I refuse to let my ego tell me that I should be doing things that might not serve my body. Will I get to it at some point in my practice? Well, maybe not in this lifetime, but I never say, “I can’t do it” in yoga – rather I go with, “I can’t do it, yet” because there’s always hope of healing and having a pose suddenly click into place, even if it is not how I saw it happening in my head. 
As for this moment and this lifetime? Well, arm balances just aren’t my thing. Our instructor yesterday was great (and so strong!) and he supported me in crane (a goal pose of mine from last fall that I’ve had to put on hold) which was super, but when he asked me if I wanted to try it again a little later and said he’d help me get into it, I said “No! I mean, no, thank you” and then almost promptly burst into tears. As with my down dog incident, the whole emotional reaction caught me off guard, but so it goes with yoga (not to mention an intensive training program!). So much so that in a moment of true synchronicity, one of my yoga girls from home shared this article with me yesterday which just so happens to be all about crying in yoga. See? It’s not just me! 
Today’s challenge came in the form of practice teaching. As with my kula, I did my best to channel my nerves as excitement and although I ended up totally botching the sanskrit in the beginning of my sequence (ardha and urdhva? I’m what you call real bad with pairs that can be easily confused, and in my mind, these two are very easily confused! I’m not even sure I spelled them correctly right now. May I point you back to the start of this post and the mush?), I found my rhythm and found myself smiling and enjoying the rest of the process. It’s hard to teach people who already know what they are doing (they know when you make mistakes) but my group is gracious and kind and totally supportive, too, and as they flowed along with me and listened to the music, I had fun. Thankfully I’ve got awesome support back home, too, so when my mood tanked later in the morning and I was being super critical and hard on myself, I got just the boost I needed via a text from a friend. 
From here on out, I’ve got to stop putting so much pressure on myself. I’ve also got to nurture my yoga teacher-self because while I know I’m on the right path, I’m still so new to it, too. And unlike arm balances, being kind to and loving myself will be part of this lifetime. 

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