Thursday, March 17, 2016

Looking in the mirror

I'm baacccck!  Can you believe it has been nearly a year since I have written?  Honestly, I can!  In that year, I've been pregnant, had a baby, taught one million Bikram classes, ran a studio, sold a house, bought a house, moved, celebrated my sons 3rd birthday, slept a little bit and face booked a lot, but I haven't written a single word!  The truth is the only reason, I am writing today is this, Thursday is my day off (mind you I did teach this am at 5:30, but that is practically the middle of the night so I consider it yesterday!) and my 7 month old fell asleep on our walk.  I don't want to bring her inside, because DO NOT WAKE A SLEEPING BABY, so I'm sitting on my front step on this beautiful March day and I have time and space in my head to write!  I missed you guys, who reads this thing anyway?

So I have been a Bikram Yoga teacher now for 5 years, and I have owned the studio for 2.  I have met countless people, and I am constantly inspired by the strength and the courage of the people that I meet.  There are so many people who I encounter on a daily basis, in the hot room, they all have the same struggle, but beyond those mirrored walls people are dealing with some serious shit and I am always blown away by the grace that some people are able to walk through life with in the face of challenge.

When I began this yoga, and if you have been reading this blog or you are my family, you know I was walking through a challenging part of my life.  The yoga room was my happy place, it was where I was able to find strength and joy and a sliver of peace.  I think about this a lot because my life has shifted tremendously since I began yoga.  I used to smile more when I practiced, and I don't think it was because I was happier, but because the yoga room was the only place I was happy, since I have so many more places in my life where I can smile.

Any way...this post isn't about smiling in yoga, it's not even about my path, but it is about looking in the mirror.  Bikram Yoga throws a lot at you.  We through 26 postures at you in a room that is heated to feel a lot like Hell, we have florescent lights and wall to wall mirrors.  Like really...WTF! Where is the candlelight and the meditation music?  Everything we do in the room is on purpose, especially those mirrors!  The mirrors main purpose is to serve you when making corrections.  You are able to see your body, and your postures and make correction based on, not only what you feel but also what you see.  It is SUCH a helpful tool.  The problem is, it is really hard to look in the mirror.  Especially at your self for 90 minutes.  I have taken classes where the teacher says over and over " look in the mirror, look in the mirror, LOOK IN THE MIRROR"  I have taught classes and no matter how many times I say it, the person I am talking to just won't look in the mirror.  It is hard.

We tend to be pretty mean to ourselves when we look in a mirror.  "Ugh so fat, hair is flat, is that another pimple"  all of these things we say and do to ourselves, and now put into the mix, face time and selfies and we are constantly critiquing our appearance (myself included, there is probably not too many meaner to me than myself).  But I think there is an amazing thing that happens in a Bikram yoga class, those mirrors become magic.

The other day I took class, for 90 minutes I looked in the mirror.  I watched my abdomen stay engaged during Pranayama, I noticed my quadricep muscle lift up as I locked my knee in the Standing Head To Knee, I watched as my shoulders began to rotate in Bow Pose, and I watched my chest rise and fall with my inhales and exhales as class got harder.  At the end of the class, after the final exhale, I looked up and found my eyes "oh. it's me" I thought to myself.  For 90 minutes I didn't see the WHOLE me, I saw the physical parts of me that was kicking ass.  I noticed muscles and strength, and alignment, and at the end of class I could look at my self and say "wow! Good job!"  This is the beauty of the mirrors in Bikram Yoga.  They are not there for us to use in judgment.  They are there as tools for alignment, and after 90 minutes of watching your body do the amazing things that it is capable of doing in a Bikram Yoga class it is pretty hard to say anything bad about yourself.

Try it.  Next time you take class, GO TODAY, look in the mirror.  Listen to the teacher and focus on the areas of the body you are working on.  Notice your muscles,  Notice what your shoulder does when you stretch up to the ceiling or forward to the mirror.  Notice your abdomen, how you suck your stomach in and your ribcage expands.  At the end of class, notice that all of that is YOU.  You were the one who did all of that work and it was remarkable.  Look in the mirror, see all that is amazing about you, even if it is only for 90 minutes.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Are yogis even allowed to be mad???

There is an image, maybe in my mind, a yogi, a yogini sitting cross-legged, thumb and index fingers meeting in an oblong circle and eyes cast down calm and serene.

Right,  if we do enough yoga, if we practice enough in the hot room isn't it true, don't our teachers promise that happiness is quick to follow.  So what happens when life gets real and it doesn't feel easier outside of the hot room.  Didn't I just suffer 90 minutes so I could feel good the 22 1/2 hours I'm not in the room? Isn't that what I was promised during my last Savasana?

Well the truth is life does happen and sometimes it's not easy and sometimes it stays not easy for longer than ninety minutes, sometimes it's a whole day, a whole week, maybe even months or years at a time when life just isn't as easy as breathing through it sounds like it should be.

It's funny, I've been pretty stressed the past few ummm weeks? months? Don't get me wrong, if you ask me if I am a happy person, I feel beyond blessed to say that I am one of the luckiest people I know because YES, I am truly and honestly happy, but life hasn't been all butterflies and kisses and I've been a bit stressed for a good stretch of time.  Money is tight, help is limited, sleep is sparse, and emotions are high and sometimes, every once in a while it gets the best of me.  This week my stresses and my anxieties reared their ugly heads as a bit of anger.  Now I don't want to sound like I'm an angry person, but I was just quick to get angry, quick to the fight this week.  So far this doesn't sound funny, the funny part, funny as in interesting not hahah hilarious, is that almost everyone I have spoken to this week has been in the same boat.  Maybe it's that we are stuck in the worlds longest winter I don't know, but it seems to me that tensions are high these day and I figured it was worth a word or two.

So what happens when a yogi gets mad, because I say it in class every once in a while " a yogi shows no struggle," do we bury it down, not acknowledge our emotion and put on our happy smiling face?  What happens when a yogi gets mad? are they even allowed?

I think there is a lot of truth in what comes up after we do Camel Pose, you hear your teacher say it, "normal to feel nauseous, dizzy, emotional, mad at me"  I usually finish this sentence with something like "this is energy, try not to judge it, criticize it or label it, acknowledge it and let it go"  MUCH EASIER SAID THAN DONE.  Much easier to do in the yoga studio than in real life, but that is why we practice.

So yes, yogis are allowed to get mad, they will, no doubt, someone will irk them and that image of the serene yogi will be challenged by the red faced, eye brows raised, forehead scrunched face person that we are all capable of becoming.

It's interesting how frustration plays out in the yoga room, you had a bad day, your husband said that thing, your boss asked you to work on your day off, that thing happened, but in the yoga room sometimes it turns into " my neighbor breaths to heavy" " this teacher talks too much" " The room feels to cold"  And this is where we can really start to practice .  The truth is yes, sometimes the person next to you breaths heavy (sometimes their breath stinks!) sometimes the teacher talks too much, sometimes the room is too hot or too cold, but all of that does not matter if shift your attention to something much more simple.  When you shift your attention to what it is you are doing at that very present moment, maybe it's breathing, maybe locking your knee, all that other stuff becomes less significant until it doesn't even exist anymore.  This is our practice for the real world, when shit gets REAL.

If you can find your peace in your Hatha Yoga practice.  If you can find stillness in the mind there, then you should be, ideally be able to find it outside of the yoga studio as well.  A constant practice, a constant awareness of where your mind is and a mindful practice of bringing back to the present moment can help you to keep from getting to attached to being angry.

So I guess, I'm trying to work it out in my mind, but I think that being angry is an emotion just like all the rest and it doesn't have to be a bad one, the scary part of anger is when we hold on to it.  What happens if we acknowledge that we feel it and then let it go, shift our attention to the task at hand, be it breathing, scrubbing the floors, forming a standing split or nursing your baby in the middle of the night, what if we shift our attention to the task and work on doing our best? I wonder if just as quickly as it came the feelings will pass and we can find a bit of calm in the middle of the storm?

I'm going to practice it, I mean I am CONSTANTLY practicing it, but I am going to set a goal, that this week I will give the task at hand my 100% participation and see if I can't find more joy in that than anything else? Are you with me?

Much Love,

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Student, Teacher, Yogi, Mommy, Business Woman, Molly

The week before Miles was born my sister called me.  I was huge, lying on the couch praying that my little boy would come a week early when my sister propositioned me, "Molly, what do you think about opening up a yoga studio?"  Now this had been my dream since the very early days of doing yoga.  I remember my teacher, Leo, asking me when I was going to go to training, I remember my first words to my future husband, "oh no, I'll never be able to afford to go!"  I remember the conversation with my mom, on the train in London, "Mom, I'm going to teacher training, I'm quitting my job in April and going to LA for 9 weeks."  and I remember crying as my sister muttered the words that would make my dream come true.  I said "umm, yes." but inside I was screaming "NO! I'm having a baby next week, NO this can not happen now!"

I didn't think it would be possible, to open a business and become a first time mom all in the same year, I just wasn't sure how it would work, but at teacher training we learned to have faith.  To have faith that if you work hard, if you stay present than you can do absolutely anything, so I jumped.  I started the search for the perfect location and my sister and I started making plans, talking budget and hashing out logistics.

Just a bit over 3 weeks ago, Bikram Yoga Doylestown opened it's doors.  It has been amazing! Amazingly exhausting, amazingly fulfilling, and amazingly exciting.  Since our doors have opened my husband and I have been tag teaming, we slap five and say "ok go, you have Miles now for the next 2 hours"  We are both working hard creating something that is meaningful, working hard at being good parents, maintaining a home (kinda) and staying on top of our relationship.  It get's tough.

Last Tuesday, I taught the 5:30 am class, I took the 9:30 and was heading back to the studio to take the 4:30 and do checkin for the 6:30.  I was so tired, I was approaching the studio and I remembered the other thing I learned at teacher training, that I was stronger than I knew!  I thought to myself, you did this at teacher training, you dragged your tired ass to class and you did all 26 postures sometimes even with a smile of your face, you can do it again.  So I did.

Last Friday night I cried.  My sister was in town for the Grand opening, I was packing my bag for work as she and my hubby fixed dinner for the kiddos (Miles and his perfect cousin Lyla).  I felt like I was missing out, I was missing out on dinners with my bub, good night kisses and all the tiny monumental firsts that happen one million times a day right now.  As I started the class I remember one more thing.  In order to take advantage of every moment, in order to find joy in what ever it is I am doing, I need to stay present.  We preach  it in the Hot Room, but it has to be put into practice out side.  Instead of getting sad about missing moments later, I should have just hugged my little guy and found peace in his smile, in his smell and his touch.  That is how I can be a very busy working mom, while maintaing the feeling of being very involved in my little guys days.

So, Bikram Yoga Doylestown has completed a part of my life.  It has given me an outlet to share my love of this yoga and to support others in their journeys towards health, wellness, wholeness and completeness.  I am working on putting my computer down (although it is so hard, I am constantly checking to see if we have any new likes! Up to 751 already!!!) and cherishing each moment I have with my hubby and my son.  I am working on staying present and enjoying each moment.  I have been finding peace in the quiet time I have cleaning the studio and I have found strength in teaching and practicing with a very tired body.

Before I started typing I re-read what I wrote in my last post, ya know in JUNE!  At the end I had listed what I was learning about being a mommy and a yogi.  Now I can reflect on what I have learned from being a mommy, a yogi and a studio owner!

1.  Things are always going to be hard, there will never be a better time than now to get things done.
2.  Have faith.  Things work out, locations fall through, but better ones pop up,  budgets get blown, but cuts can happen else where, have faith that things will have a way of working out.  ( I forget this one A LOT)
3. Stay present.  To me, this is the most important.  Life is busy, we all have lists, and fears, and anxieties but stay present in the very moment.  What ever it is you are doing, breathing in Savasana, vacuuming, nursing your baby at 3am when your alarm is going off at 4:14, give that task your 100 percent attention and participation.  This is joy.  Keep it simple, don't bother with getting to far ahead of your self.
4.  You are stronger than you could ever imagine.  You can do things you don't think you can, your body can do it, you just have to trick your mind into believing it.

Ok, Miles is at school, and I have 30 minutes before I have to head back to the studio, so I'm going to try to get some cleaning done!  If you are in the area come visit me at Bikram Yoga Doylestown, I would love to see your Happy Smiling Face!

Much love to you,

P.S. I'm not sure how much sense this posts makes, remember I'm pretty tired!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Yogi turned Mommy

It's 9:36 and class starts in 24 minutes.  I'm 30 minutes away, in my yoga clothes sitting in my bed, next to my lies my sleeping baby, arms out out wide and hopefully dreaming of something sweet.  We had every intention of going to yoga, spending 90 minutes in the hot room, but as I picked Miles up out of  his crib I looked outside and realized that that tornado warning might be real and I better just stay home.

Oh, by the way, right after I wrote my last blog, the one about the longest spine twist, I had a baby.  On February 26, 2013 an amazing thing happened.  I became a mom to the most adorable little boy, and for three months, instead of writing I have just been cherishing every moment with this guy.  Miles is 3 and 1/2 months old now, 17 pounds and is by far the best thing I have ever done!

So anyway back to me not getting to yoga.  It's funny, I'm not even all that disappointed.  Don't get me wrong I still love getting into that hot room, and too many days away from it I can start to feel my skin crawl, begging me to get back.  But these days yoga isn't about me any more.  It's not about standing there, feet together nicely, toes on the line, it is more about staying very present during every moment in my life, not worrying about the places that I'm not but getting the most out of the where ever I am at any given moment.

Today I am in bed, with a sleeping baby and two pups, there is raining falling down in sheets outside my window and the prospect of me getting to yoga is slim to none.  So since I can't write about my practice today (which I never do anyway)  I can only tell you how being a mom has changed yoga for me.

Well being a mom and doing yoga...well the two don't mix, I never get to go! Oh wait that's not true.  They do mix and they compliment each other making me both a better yogi and a better mommy!  It is true that I only get to do yoga 2-4 times a week and sometimes 0 times but never any more, and it is true that I miss going 7 days a week and feeling "hard core" with my yoga practice, but being a mom has changed my practice and my outlook on what it means to do yoga.

So after having a 9.7lbs baby, I had to take 5 weeks off.  I would do a few back bends and a little bit of the standing series once in a while during those first five weeks, but for the most part I just concentrated on my little guy.  When I finally made it back to the hot room, I was happily surprised to find that I could breath! Pranayama wasn't soooo hard for me any more and the heat didn't scare me.  To my dismay I found that back bends were hard, I couldn't lock my needs in Pada-hastasana ( my mother in law is probably happy to know that my Japanese Ham sandwich was a bit soggy for a few weeks) and forget about the spine strengthening series.  Full Locust is IMPOSSIBLE!!!!!  The amazing thing was how calm I felt.  For ninety minutes, I went into and out of asana's with a still mind.  My busy busy new life that I was figuring out the other 22 and a 1/2 hours of each day didn't exist during my practice. It was just me and my new body and my breath.  Class felt unbelievably good.

Oh and let's talk about this new body.  This new inflexible, soft, a bit wider, and a lot tighter (and not tight in the good way) body.  For the first few weeks after Miles was born, it was amazing how new and different my body was.  It looked different, it felt different but for the FIRST time in my life I not only accepted this body, I fell in love with it.  I even remember coming out of the bath room one day, just to tell my husband "Alex, don't tell anyone, but I secretly have never felt better about myself"  This coming from a girl who STILL can't button most of her jeans, and has refused to buy new pants in three years.  I was just so amazed at myself, the fact that I had grown a life for nine months, I delivered a baby (which is the HARDEST thing I have ever done) and how natural it felt to be his mom.  Not to mention the fact that my body produced everything that my baby needed, and it was because of me and my husband that he was here with us live and in person.

Being a mom and doing yoga is similar in that way.  No matter how many flaws you might believe you have, being a mom and being a yogi shows you how perfect your body truly is, because only a strong and healthy body can sustain being both.

Being a mommy yogini, I appreciate my yoga so much more.  The days I get to go are gifts, I don't care who the teacher is or what studio I am able to get to, my practice is mine.  It's not about the room any more, or the teacher, the heat or even how many times I fall out of my postures.  It's about the ninety minutes that I do something to take care of myself.

Oh and it feels so good.  It is amazing how much of my mommy life is spent hunched over.  Hunched over his crib, hunched over his changing table, shoulders forward as I nurse him to sleep, hunched over his play mat, by the end of the first week of being a mom my back was killing me and yoga, as much as it hurt and as difficult as those backbends were, felt like a full body massage a really hard, kinda make it hurt, full body massage and I needed it...bad!

So let's see, being a mom changed my yoga...

1. I don't get to go very often, but when I do I APPRECIATE it
2. My body is tighter, softer and wider...but I LOVE it more
3. And all those hours of forward bends and back yoga gives me RELIEF

And how has yoga helped me be a better is crying! I gots to go...

Much love to you all!
Hope to see you in a hot room someday very soon!!!!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Longest Spine Twist....a warning I may or may not drop the F bomb

The second day of Teacher Training Jim Kallet taught.  Jim had been introduced to us on the first day, he helps with the writing of Bikram's books, he gives lectures during training, he owns a notoriously hot yoga studio in San Diego and he has a surprising tattoo that runs up and down the entire backside of his body.  Jim taught on the second day of training and I loved his class.  He was knowledgable, he was funny, he was hard and he got me through my third class. Every time he did, I was excited to see him take the podium, because at teacher training you never knew what you were going to get, and you only hoped it was going to be someone to get you through.

Then week 6 happened, this is the middle of training, your body is exhausted your mind is full and there is not much left of you that doesn't hurt.  Not to mention you haven't slept in 6 weeks. Jim Kallet took the podium once again.  Now as much as I loved this guy, the man could talk...and talk...and talk...and this day, this class, Jim had a lot to say.  It was a hot class.  I was in row 10, standing dead center, in front of the heater, behind 500 other sweating yogis.  This was the class where I died.  You know what I'm talking about, your breathing becomes difficult in Pranayama, your heart starts racing as soon as you put your arms above your head and you think to your self, "shit, I have 85 more minutes of this"  I never left the room at training, and after the first day, I never sat out another pose,  this class tested me on every level.  Physically, I had to stay on my feet, mentally, I had to stay with my breath and emotionally, I had to do everything I could not to burst into tears.  But hey man, if I can survive a class like this, what can't I survive.  I remember getting to Spine Twist.  The final posture of our 26 and 2.  Jim was going on and on and on, probably about the benefits or maybe something a little bit deeper, I'm not sure cause my mind was a skipping CD " Shut the fuck up, shut the fuck up, please God shut the fuck up" I needed to get out of the room and I needed this man, whom I had grown to love deeply to simply shut the fuck up!  The pose seemed to go on forever and as much as I pleaded, Jim kept on going.

This is the final week of pregnancy, you have spent 9 months (not so different from 90 minutes in a hot room or 9 weeks at teacher training, see a pattern)  waiting, falling in love, learning about all of the things your body is capable of doing.  You have spent 9 months accepting all of things you can't control, how your body feels on a given day, the aches, the pains, the hard days, the amazing days, the days when you can't stop crying and the days you feel like super man.  You have fallen in love with that little peanut on the inside but during week 40 your skipping cd of a mind has one thought "come the fuck out, come the fuck out, please God come the fuck out!"  Don't get me wrong, I love this little guy and I will host him for as long as he wants to live on the inside and I will take good good care of him, but that is not to say that the waiting for labor is not absolute torture.  It is the world's longest Spine Twist.  You have done every thing, you have gotten over all of the humps and the hard moments and you are ready to enjoy that big, scrumptious glass of Red Wine, I mean water...after yoga you drink water!  So what can you do? What do you do in class, when the end is near, you can feel the fresh air that is pressing in from the outside, but the teacher just won't stop teaching, what can you possibly do?

Well, my friend, that is why we do the yoga.  That is why we have long, hard, hot classes that test us in every possible way.  So that when you are nine months pregnant, your bladder is constantly full, the cramps on your inner thighs make it difficult to do all the walking every one reminds you you should be doing, you remember that every moment you are in the room, all ninety minutes of hard work only make the other 22 and 1/2 hours you have outside of the room better.  Each moment you spend suffering in the hot room is another moment you get to enjoy of life on the outside.  So as I sit here, only one day late, which means I could quite possibly have 9 more days as a pregnant woman, I have to remember that what I'm doing here is great.  That this hard hard work ends with an amazing reward, a perfect little baby boy.  Every moment he has on the inside is another chance to make him stronger for life on the outside!   So patience my friends.  Yoga is a practice in patience.  You know it is, you hear it all the time Patience, Self-control, Concentration, Faith, and Determination.  In the mean time, as I wait and wait and wait, it is another day I get to go take a yoga class, another day I get to eat a brownie with out too much guilt and another day that I make my little man a little bit stronger, with just a bit of patience! But with that in mind, let's say it together "please come the fuck out!!!!"

Namaste and Much love to you all,

M & M ( we are still one)

Oh and don't forget that this week is National Eating Disorder week. Try going a day with out make up, I know I probably won't, but if you feel up to it, try it and embrace your natural beauty.  Say something kind to yourself and do something extra special to show your self just how amazing you really are.  I know what you could do!  Go take a yoga class!!! There is nothing better you can do for yourself!!!!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

February 24....

Did you know that February 24 is the start of National Eating Disorder week this year.  I didn't until just a few minutes ago, Facebook told me. Thank goodness for Facebook... Anyway, I had this subtle rush come over me as I read that this year on February 24, the Nation will kick off a week to acknowledge the struggle people have with this addiction, where ever it might come from.  I felt empowered.  Why you ask?  Well, February 24 is my due date, which is a pretty amazing in and of it self, but for me, the culmination of my pregnancy is not just about how my life is about to change, but it also marks how far my life has come in just a few short years.

Flash back 5 years ago, before yoga, before Alex, before pizza.  I am sitting in a therapist office, most likely running down a list of reasons why I can't agree to my nutritionist's challenge to eat a slice of pizza before the week is out.  I'm probably going over and over why eating as little as I do just works for me and how being a healthy version of myself scares me just as much as being a fat version of myself.  My therapist plays this card a lot, "you want children one day don't you?" she knows, that my whole life, it is what I've wanted to be a "soccer mom, with a mini van"  "yes of course I want babies, lots of them, but I don't think it's going to happen for me anyway"  My therapist, let's call her Anastasia for today, stresses to me that only a healthy woman will be able to give life to a new baby.  Anastasia explains that every time I want to use my symptoms, every time I want to go back to my old ways, stop eating, let my self become invisible again I need to imagine my child.  This got me.  I wanted to be a good mom to that unborn baby and I could only be a good mom to someone else when I started to be a good person to myself.  So, I didn't eat the pizza, but I did work really hard to sort myself out and fight against all of my demons, all the voices that told me I wasn't worthy enough to be healthy and I found a path to health.

My path was a long one, windy, difficult and included a lot of talks with my nutritionist, aka my Jewish mamma, and Anastasia, and a LOT of yoga! A whole lot of yoga.  My health and my life became a bit more complete when I met Alex.  I fell in love with him and the way that he loved me and I wanted to be a better person for him.  He inspired me to find a passion and give up comforts of easy life to follow dreams.  My dreams happened to take me into the hot room over and over again which in return helps me to stay healthy.

So anyway, flash forward to this moment, right now.  I just got home from teaching a class, such a great class, a quiet class with seven strong yogis, I'm sitting on my couch sandwiched between my two pups and have my laptop resting against my tremendous bump.  I'm a healthy, fat version of myself, but I have to be honest with you.  I love the kind of fat I am today.  I've got a baby inside of me, I am a healthy woman who has been able to carry this baby for 39 weeks and in just a few more days I will welcome my baby boy into my world.  So on February 24 I will celebrate the birth of my baby boy, and to be honest with you, that is probably all I will be thinking about, but today, as I look forward to that day I will celebrate all the people that have made me a strong person today, I will celebrate my self, for having the courage to face myself, to face my fears and conquer them.  I will celebrate the love that I have that has inspired me to continue to be better and I will celebrate all of the people out there struggling really hard to figure it all out, to overcome there own addictions and fears especially those with eating disorders.  It's a tough one, a really hard thing to overcome, and I'm not sure if we ever really completely do, but I do know life outside of the eating disorder is really good.  Life is good, and when you can find the good, it can only get better!

So if you think of it, on February 24 do something kind for yourself, in honor of National Eating Disorder week.  Spend a moment to find something you love about yourself and acknowledge it.  Remember your body is this perfectly amazing machine ( I say this in my yoga class all the time, if you want to hear it...COME TAKE A CLASS) your body knows what to do, stop fighting it and let it do it's job.  Become the best version of yourself!

Oh and keep me and my baby boy in your thoughts, our bags are packed and I am ready to go!  Can't wait to see his little face!!!!

Much Love to you,

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A new post...finally.... a new practice

Where the hell have I been? It's been ages since I've written! I've thought about it, it's crossed my mind to sit down, I thought about titles for new posts and topics for discussion, but the truth of the matter is I never sat down at my computer, opened up my good ole blog and started to type.  Shame on me!   So here I am! A new woman, Mrs. Mitnick and 8 and a half months pregnant! Talk about being busy!

In the past 9 months I have been a busy busy gal.  I have been teaching yoga, 12 classes a week, practicing yoga 5 to 6 times a week, becoming a wife, becoming an aunt, forgetting how to cook, learning to eat pizza and ice cream and oh that's right making a baby.  He is about ripe and ready to become the world's newest yogi, musician, genius....or what ever my little baby boy might want to be, let's be honest, hopefully he is  good with numbers and is interested in, oh I don't know becoming a private investor/ stock broker/ someone that makes money.

So I taught a class tonight, not much different from any other Tuesday night, but as I get bigger and bigger stepping in front of the mirror get's harder and harder.  Not only because of my ever growing waste line, but also because I'm f-ing exhausted and there is a foot in my ribs making it difficult to breath when the room is a little too humid!  Today was a lazy day, and I was feeling super tired as I unlocked the door to the studio, but as I took my place on the podium, my energy came back and I remembered why I keep on keeping on, it's because I love what I do and even the hard days as a yoga teacher are pretty amazing days!'

So today student O stood in front of me, a little to the left.  He has been going non stop for over a year now.  He takes more classes than there are days in the week, and as I watch him day after day I'm noticing him getting more and more tired.  And I get him.  I totally get it, it's the thing in his life that feels good.  He is good at this.  He is good at taking lots and lots of classes, but I also get that one of the beautiful things about yoga is, that the real yoga happens when your not in the room.

Bikram teaches you 26 basic yoga asanas.  It teaches you how to be still in the midst of discomfort, and it teaches you the importance of checking your ego at the door.  Sometimes the best thing you can do, is take it easy, skip a posture, skip a class, hell, skip a week so that when you come back you are stronger and you are doing more of the yoga more correctly rather than to much yoga asana incorrectly.  I thought about myself, in fact some one even asked me tonight "how are you going to manage to take 6 weeks off" my response "let's see if I actually do?"

Since I have been pregnant my yoga has been an experiment.  In the beginning I thought I was going to be uber flexible and able to become a yoga champion with a bowling ball in my gut, then reality set in, and Pranayama became really hard, and then I had super strong days, and then I had to sit down, leave the room, cry a bit, skip a week, eat too much before class and throw up a little in standing separate leg stretching pose, open a window, buy bigger shorts, cry a bit more, have the best standing bow of my life, the worst standing bow of my life and completely give up on ever touching my forehead to my knee.  The bottom line is, I had to check my ego at the door.  I had to take my yoga day by day and I had to learn to take my new body day by day.  That has been my practice for the past nine months. Learning to let go of all of the assumptions and expectations I had for my self.  I'm doing my best every day, that's all I can ask inside and out side of the room.  That's what I preach to student O all the time, to all of my students "hear what you can, do what you can and have a little bit of fun"

So let's start a new chapter, yoga inside and outside of the room.  Yoga as a mom, my toughest classes at teacher training have only started to prepare me for what's in store, but I am positive that those weeks I spent training to be a teacher, these years I have spent pushing myself through the hottest, sweatiest classes have taught me that I'm a lot stronger than I think I am and I am capable of anything.  This yoga makes me bullet proof, sex proof, money proof and when I can let go of all of my attachments to who I was before I was mom and forget about judging who I might become I can get through this tough one too.  So let's get started. Toes on the line! I'm all in.

Oh and I'll try to be better about keeping you guys up to speed too.  I know it's so hard when you don't hear from me!  Keep breathing you guys! Breathing in I calm my self, breathing out I smile.

Molly and my soon to be little man!

P.S. a special shout out to my sister tonight, Lyla Jane was born just over 6 weeks ago, you have shown me how strong you are, what an amazing woman you are and what it means to be a new mom! If we were in the hot room, you would be in the front row, showing us all how to get through the hard days with a happy smiling face, english bull dog determination, and the strength of a bengal tiger!