Every day during the immersion, we would gather at 8:30 and start the day by pairing with someone in the class. Sitting on floor directly across from the other, you would hold one hand and close your eyes. Open to the vibrations from the others around you, it would begin with a simple mantra “I can sense….” Most days you were happy and would express that happiness. Others you would open your heart feeling secure and simply let your emotions flow.
For me, I was the jokester in the class. I would sneak in perpetually late, put my mat in the back and remain happily detached from the group, thinking about if my kids made it to school on time, if the laundry got done, and if my husband was making any progress on his job search.
This process was coming at a cost. In five days time, I had missed several sports games with my children, drove 2 hours back on Friday to cohost a baby shower, and drove 2 home on Saturday to see my girls off to their first prom. When I returned on Saturday, my husband shared that he had received a job offer from a company that we needed to discuss. Apparently this was a great position, however in order to accept the position, he would have to spend the majority of time away from us living across the country during the week, or pull the kids out of school and move. We knew we couldn’t transition the kids again, which only left one option, seeing him on the weekends.
Arriving back at yoga on Sunday, the final day, my mind was full.
As we paired up for sharing, I knew that today I would struggle. My partner and I both took turns, tenderly listening to the other. Afterward Todd, our teacher, looked at me noticing my sadness, and asked me what I was aware of? I fought to hold back the tears. I began thinking of my husband and all the nights I wouldn’t be with him.
“I am aware” I replied, “that I am sad.”
“I am aware that I, the one who makes everyone laugh, am experiencing pain and with sharing that pain, comes a great deal of vulnerability.”
“I am aware that I am on time and that I am sitting in the middle, front row, and with that comes a commitment to this group. I realize that by exposing my heart, you will all come to know who I am, and might even start relying on me. ”
The tears ran down my face.
“Wendy look around you.”
“I can’t” I sniffled.
Ever so slowly, I raised my head and turned sideways. What I saw were beautiful faces, the empathy and tears in each one of their eyes.
Where I once thought I couldn’t do yoga because of a lack of flexibility, I now knew differently. I realized that it wasn’t about bending or flexing. It was about shedding your layers and opening your heart.
In order to teach this Anusara practice I had to live it. Not only did I need to see the inherent beauty in others, I had to see the inherent beauty in myself. Physically and emotionally I was preparing to leave my cocoon. Shining from my heart I would spread my wings, and embrace the metamorphosis that was gently changing my life.
For more stories with Wendy visit her website at Life With Wendy. .