I recently spent several hours digging through the mountains of paper stacked all over my house, desperately looking for some notes I’d taken while researching my next novel. I finally found them, tossed mindlessly in my yoga teacher training binder.
Disgusted with my lack of organization—it was, after all, the second time I’d lost those notes—I set aside writing for awhile, determined to tackle the disaster that was my home.
My husband came home from work, unaware of the project I’d undertaken. He looked at my clean desktop and the corresponding bags of to-be-recycled paper lining the hallway. Curious but wary, he cautiously approached as I sorted papers into ”recycle,” “re-file,” and “God only knows what this is” piles.
“Who is this woman?” he asked.
Buried in the back of my file cabinet, I found an essay I wrote when applying for my first yoga teacher training. I remember writing that essay as if it were yesterday. I sat in Maui’s warm sun, scribbling furiously in my journal, trying to explain why I loved yoga and how I wanted to share it.
But as I re-read the words, I barely recognized the person who wrote that essay. Her goals seem so different than what I’ve achieved in the last twelve years.
In some ways, her aspirations seem nobler than what I’ve accomplished.
- To establish a nonprofit yoga center
- To primarily use yoga to help female survivors of violence become whole again.
On the other hand, I’ve achieved some of her goals.
- To grow emotionally and spiritually through the practice of yoga
- To use yoga to help others overcome emotional and physical ailments.
And she didn’t even mention some of my most impactful work.
- To train other yoga teachers, so the benefits of Viniyoga can be spread beyond my personal teaching
- To keep the yoga studio open, in hard times as well as good
- To reach out to people I may never even meet, through writing.
Part of me laughs at the naiveté of the woman who wrote that essay; another part of me misses her. But even as I write these words, she continues evolving. Yoga has that effect on people.
Who is this woman? I still don’t know. But using the tools of yoga and writing, I’ll keep finding out. I hope you join me.