11/11/2012

reflections on yoga teacher training

Today is my last day of the yoga teacher training I started in September. Hard to believe these 100 hours are coming to a close. I got up early this morning so I could spend plenty of time with my meditation practice reflecting on what I have gained from this training. It will be impossible to summarize in one blog post but I felt compelled to write something down as this weekend has been incredibly healing and intense.

One of the reasons I practice yoga and what drew me to it in the first place is that it is a means to connect my heart, mind and body. I remember when I got really serious about practicing while living in Berlin. Several times a week I experienced these enormous releases in poses, years and years of trauma and pent up emotions were coming out and after long savansas and meditations I would leave the studio feeling light and radiant. It was a very special time in my life and really the beginning of my journey in this practice. I had been practicing off and on for years but it was during this time that I needed yoga.

Many people come to yoga broken, searching for something they cannot even put their finger on. That was me. My life at the time was really good but I knew deep down something was missing and after my first class at the Jivamukti studio I knew what it was. I was missing the spiritual connection to my body. For the first time in all those years of yoga a teacher spoke to me in a way that my heart could hear and I showed up to that studio nearly every day until I came back to the states.

Growing up as an attractive young girl I learned at an early age how to disassociate from my body. I, like so many women I know have been objectified the majority of our lives and that has caused us to become fragmented. I also experienced unsavory situations that caused me to grow up too fast and those further impacted the divide between my heart, mind and body. After years and years of therapy I came to yoga and found a practice that invites me to get into my body in ways I hadn’t since I was a ballet dancer in my early years. Interestingly, I quit ballet around seventh grade and that is when for lack of better words my world shifted in dramatic ways, ways I am still trying to heal so many years later.

Throughout the teacher training we have been asked why we want to teach yoga. There are many reasons I want to teach but I have come to understand that the main one for me is to support people to get into their bodies, to make the heart, mind, body ┬áconnection that yoga offers that has changed my life in such profound ways. Yoga can be a wonderful practice and gift. While I still have moments where I feel fragmented and disconnected from my body I am learning how to address them and be gentle with myself during the process. All the years of living in such a divided state will not be changed over night. On some level it isn’t even up to me how much I progress or how quickly I heal. My job is to continue to get on my mat, practice my asana and meditation and share the benefits of my practice with others.

This morning I am humbled by this practice and grateful for all of the wonderful teachers in my life. For the first time I believe in my heart that I am not broken and hopeless when it comes to loving myself and allowing others to love me as well. I still have moments of embarrassment, fear, frustration, and sadness but I understand that is part of life and it doesn’t ruin my entire week or month like it once did. Most days I feel comfortable in my body and appreciative for how healthy, flexible and strong it is. If I am operating from a fragmented state that is my choice. The past is over and while it is important to revisit it to gain clarity it is not a place I want to live from. Today I can breathe, come back into my body and remind myself that right here right now is where miracles happen and this is where I want to live.

xoa

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