Coming home

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I want to be comfortable. That is a pretty broad statement to say the least. I want to feel comfortable in my skin, in my mind, in my body and soul. Comfortable with me and who I am or who I continue to evolve into being.  It seems that my identity is caught up with what I do instead of who I am inside. I’m a mom, a daughter, a sister, a studio owner, a yoga practiioner, a woman, a friend and the list goes on with the outside things that I identify myself with. All great things of course and I am super proud of what I have accomplished. I will continue to forge ahead with these goals I have, however being comforable has this level of acceptance to it. Living in acceptance for the good and the bad, for the happiness and the sadness, for what you recieve and what you give. How comfortable are we with living in accectance for what is?

Going to India and practicing Ashtanga yoga is not necessarity the way be be comfortable. There is a lot that goes on from the first day in the Shala to the last days. I have to say that coming to Mysore this time was like coming home for me as there is this big family of people going through similar expereinces.  From the beginner to the more advanced practitioner, everyone is in this transformational mode.  Every student is focused inside the Shala. I personally think I know what to expect although we work to teach ourselves to let go of these expections. When we let go of expectations is when the yoga can begin.  Whan we let go of expectations we allow ourselves to transform.  Part of this transformation for me is what I call coming home.  When we let go of expectations we allow ourselves to evolve and grow.

It was interesting as this last month I realized that my self imposed limitations were just that and in my mind. There was this level of consistency that I experienced in my practice. It had to do with the physical asana, having just the right assistance where I needed it as well as doing what was expected. Mentally I was pretty consistent, except for the day when…well that’s another story. In any event, I felt surrounded by a support system inside this practice space. One of the shifts that happened was that mentally I tried not to judge my practice or get disappointed if something did not go as I expected or would have liked it to go. I made a pact with my mind that I would try to accept what happens on the mat and leave it at that. The first month, some emotions came up which I label the struggle.  So many judgments as well as other emotions kept creeping into my mind as I practiced.

So here I am feeling comfortable, trusting in the assistance I recieve daily when I need it. I remember to embrace the built in tools of the method. I am ready to do my backbends seeing the person who has been helping me consistently nearby, pretty much at my mat.  It’s so hot so I’m working to improve my breath as it gets fast and choppy. I have some preconceived notions about what ending well means in my practice. I drop back, come up. She hasn’t moved as she is patient. She encourages me with her eyes. I drop back again, come up and Sharath is there. This is not the plan I had in my head. Most of the times, I am very comfortable being taught by the wonderful teachers in the room who he has as his assistants. I have to clear my mind again from these thoughts. He stepped in because he knew I was getting very comfortable. I quickly decide that it’s enough of this dropping back so I cross my arms in preparation for the final backbend. He is ready for me although he would have waited for me to drop again. I figure, why would I do that and I decide I’d rather not. This is all in the time it takes for nod my head, cross my arms and ready my breath. I go back and we catch from the air just as I have been doing. He moves my hand up a little. I work with him as sometimes I shake my head no with others. I’m looking at my nose, trying to breathe the best I can.  When I come up, I don’t grab him this time. I’m pleased but truthfully I’m more relieved and maybe even surprised.  I get adjusted in the forward fold. This all left an impression, because I did not think I had much to do with this. Turns out it’s me that I have to trust. I say that Sharath is shedding some light in many ways and that day working with my mind was what I needed. It’s not about the doing but it’s about where is your mind. Can you really be one pointed and focused? Can you go beyond a self impossed limitation and be at home? I have to leave this experience here for now. I’m ready to come home in more ways than one.

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