This week’s blog entry was written by guest author Kim Tull-Esterbrook. Kim is a graduate of Whole Life Yoga’s teacher training program, and our newest instructor! She can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I did not love yoga when I was first introduced to it in my early 20’s . My short hamstrings and patched together heart found the practice challenging, to say the least, but I knew right away that it was good for me. I could tell that it was a practice that had the potential to change so many of the patterns that felt damaging in my life; but I was unwilling to really dedicate myself to it, or more truthfully, I was afraid. I imagined that I would uncover some horrible truth about myself hidden beneath the surface and so I played with yoga inconsistently for years.
Six years later, while going through the painful transition of a divorce, I found my way to a consistent practice as the only means of keeping myself afloat, but I was a needy partner; opening myself only as far as I felt safe and expecting so much in return. My practice had a one- sided desperation but it saved me in so many ways.
Fast forward 6 more years and with the support of a dear friend, I found my way to Whole Life Yoga’s teacher training program. Finally I was ready to do the work. I moved step by step to open myself and was emotionally prepared for whatever horrible thing I was going to encounter in the depths of my being. What I found was very much a surprise.
Absolutely, there were things that were hard to take about patterns and choices in my life- things that I had been doing to myself to sabotage my own hopes and dreams, but it was also liberating to learn to see things with clarity and without judgement. I learned how to separate my ideas of myself from those layers of habit. I learned the great value of showing up to my practice even when I didn’t want to- when it was hard, when I was distracted, when I felt defeated.
And somewhere in the midst of all that work that I knew was good for me, I found my way to a place where I love my practice. I am not where I thought (or even hoped) I would be when I reached that terrifically adult age of 35. I have not published a book (though maybe this will be my year!), I have not landed that money making job, or even found my way anywhere close to that unattainably beautiful classical King pigeon pose but I pull out my mat almost every day and feel instantly at home.
Through my practice I feel as if I have an outlet for the best parts of me. I have found a way to feel connected to myself, my community and the world. I have found a way to be free. Some days, I think that there is still so much that I don’t know and that is true. On other days, I think this is all I could ever need to know- I take a breath in, I let a breath out. The world feels a bit simpler. It feels like love.
Please Join Kim in her new classes at Whole Life Yoga!