Sunday, October 21, 2018

THE EMPATH



she breathes the air
with eyes wide open
she sees what most overlook
but to her it's magic
the light glistens
and the sky dims
the birds converse
and the stars -- they wink
a secret language shared between her
and her
she recognizes that all beings' conception is uniform
we are all one
disparate in manifestation, yes
but connected
deeply connected
she will not stray from this connection
she craves it
sometimes it overwhelms her
she feels it in the others
like twin telepathy
we are all siblings

Monday, February 19, 2018

CONNECT AND EXPLORE

the two most important things in this beautiful life are connection and exploration.

connect and explore.

to yourself / by yourself
to others / with others 
to nature / in nature

to figure out yourself is to discover what moves you. what makes your soul happy. who makes your should happy. where your soul is happy. 

there is no wrong decision; every experience teaches you something new.

nothing is permanent. you'll never know until you try.

you cannot remain guarded. an open heart is an open door.

open your heart to open your mind.

connect. explore.

Tuesday, January 23, 2018

WHY ME



I can't sleep. If this goddamn blood pressure cuff squeezes me one more time I'm going to lose it. This is so unnecessary. I shouldn't be here. My picc line stings. My veins are black and blue. Why is that machine beeping? Here comes my nurse. Should I pretend to sleep? Screw it. She's probably here for more blood work, anyway. 

Oh, how easy it is to let negative self-talk dictate your reality.

"Why me?" is easier than "challenge accepted."
Self-pity is easier than self-confidence.
Anger is easier than acceptance.

When your reality becomes interrupted and your sympathetic responses kick in, it's hard to turn off this kind of negative self-talk. But it's so critical.

In times of uncertainty, remind yourself that this is not an obstacle in your path; this obstacle is your path. You are right where you should be. You are being taught a very important lesson. You have graduated and moved on to a higher level of acceptance. Every situation teaches you something, and often these lessons are repeated in different forms until that lesson has been learned.

Take yourself out of the situation and just observe. Think rationally but with compassion and acceptance. Be kind to yourself for experiencing these emotions; be there for you, then help yourself find the silver lining.

"Why me?" I'll tell you why --
because you're ready for this.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

WHAT DRIVES YOU


"find what you love. do that."

Sure, ok. This sounds so simple. But why is it so hard?
We are taught to go to school, 
to get a job,
to get married,
to have kids,
to continue working,
to retire.

These standards make it challenging to take moments to ourselves.
To sit with ourselves, in silence, and discover what makes our internal flames ignite.
To allow ourselves to fuel those flames. 
With experience.
With curiosity.
With no judgement.
To take chances.
To fail.
To make changes.
To succeed.
To challenge those standards and create a reality that we are so in love with.

I dare you to wake up and break away from habit. 
Do something that you love every day.
It doesn't have to be huge; can be. It can be your full time thang, if you want. 
Or it can just be a minute
every day
doing something that makes you smile.

For me, it's teaching. One day I'll do it full-time.
Until then, you can catch me at the yoga studio. 
Teaching. Practicing. Smiling.

Saturday, January 28, 2017

Home


There's just something about waking up in your space.
About being surrounded by the beauty that you spent hours collecting.
About knowing exactly where everything is.
What everything is.

There's just something about coming home to your space.
About plopping on your dream couch after a long day.
About filling your refrigerator with nourishing fuel.
Just for you.

There's just something about being alone in your space.
About cuddling up with homemade ginger/turmeric tea and Netflix.
About looking around and realizing this is all you.
This is just you.

And you have company over.
And you make dinner.
And you blast music.
And you make smoothies.
And you do yoga.
And you vacuum.
And you light candles.
And you serenade your kitten.
And you run out of paper towels.

There's just something about going to sleep in your space.
About losing millions of socks in the marshmallow you call your bed.
About going to sleep with a radiant smile.
Because this is all for you.

Saturday, September 24, 2016

A NOTE TO MYSELF


"don't stress, beauty. let the transitions occur so you arrive at your destination with integrity. trust the process. do what you can do, but don't put too much pressure on yourself. it will all work out. there is so much goodness in your life right now. so much love. so much opportunity. seize the day, you beautiful soul. bring the sunshine and dance with the unknown. open your arms to this beautiful thing we call 
life."

Monday, May 16, 2016

EIGHT MONTHS IN THE MAKING

I can barely touch my toes. My hips are stubborn and tight. I have zero shoulder flexibility. But guess what? I'm becoming a yoga teacher.

I took yoga as a physical education credit in high school. I've taken a few yoga classes at various gyms. I quit halfway through a breathtaking yoga class in Costa Rica. I tried hot yoga once. But yoga found me, for real, about six months ago. Since I've committed to my practice, I've noticed my strength and flexibility improve dramatically. I went from describing yoga as "stressful" to "calming."

The Funky Om is a studio that I stepped in and instantly knew I belonged at. Two particular instructors resonated with me from day one, and when I found out they were hosting a teacher training, I couldn't stop thinking about it. My friend Lauren invited me to sign up with her. I handed in my deposit, and the rest is history in the making.

10/9, 10/10, 10/11
Weekend One. Exhausting. Amazing.

After an hour of asana, twenty-three of us sat in a circle. Glowing. Excited. Anxious. Vulnerable.
We introduced ourselves and got to know our fellow trainees and teachers. An instant connection captured in our first selfie:


Friday: We learned the Gayatri Mantra (a mantra of physical, emotional and mental healing), got advice from last year's graduates ("Take one weekend at a time. Listen and absorb"), received all of our books for these next eight months, and our new mala beads. 
Saturday: Claire came in and led Kirtan. SO MUCH FUN. I love the drum especially. Leslie led us through a 10-minute morning meditation that felt like only 2, we learned the meaning of Om: the original sound that created the universe. Spoken by Brahma. Used to initiate a connection in the East. Sacred syllable comparable to 'Amen'. An impersonal connection to the divine, discussed the deities Brahma (creator of the universe), Vishnu (sustainer of the universe) & Shiva (destroyer of the universe), learned about reincarnation & Somsara (the wheel of life), had a killer heated vinyasa with Milard, learned a bit of Sanskrit, were introduced to the eight limbs of yoga, learned how to cue Virabhadrasana 1, Virabhadrasana 2 and Trikonasana, and gave and received amazing Thai massages.

Amalia got into a small car accident, thank goodness she was fine, so I was her chauffeur for Saturday and Sunday. We decided to go to the Riverhead outlets on Saturday night to get some new lululemon attire (because let's face it, we're going to be YOGA TEACHERS) & on our way back we watched a deer get hit by a car. This was heartbreaking for me especially, but Amalia's a social worker and she helped me get through it. I can tell we're going to be great friends already.

Sunday: We chanted with Milard (Govinda Damodara Madhaveti), meditated with our mala beads, had an amazing heated vinyasa with Leslie, learned about the Bhagaved Gita: a sacred text comparable to the bible with stories about how to be a yogi and the Maha Bahart: the great story of India & largest book ever written, learned about the importance of assisting in your yoga class and how it can change people's lives, learned how to assist in many standing postures & practiced with Virhabhadrasana 1, Virabhadrasana 2 and Trikonasana, and gave and received life-changing Thai massages: 

I was a bit reserved when we learned how to assist. You really have to get close to your students and make sure you are properly touching them. I was nervous I was going to hurt my fellow trainees, especially in the assist we learned for Trikonasana, where you balance on one leg and use your other to push into their upper thigh and straighten their leg while pulling their tricep and forearm towards you to create length in the upper body. But I know it's only the first weekend, and I will get more comfortable each time I practice. 
We are all getting really close as a group. It's amazing to see, and it's only the beginning. Everyone is extremely giving and friendly. Harry was giving Kim acupuncture during our lunch break, Lauren brought Sandy home to shower, and we are all having withdrawals from this weekend! I just know we will all be lifelong friends. In eight months we will all become registered yoga teachers.

5/3, 5/14, 5/15
Weekend eight. Exhausting. Amazing.

Friday: Leslie led us through a basic class. We learned about chair yoga. We wrote advice cards for last year's graduates. We talked about the business of yoga, because in 48 short hours, we will all become registered yoga teachers. Where did the time go.
Saturday: We chanted Radha Rani. We talked more business. We sweat our asana off with Milard. We giggled. We took our last Sanskrit quiz. We taught our last basic sequence and got our last critiques. We talked about private yoga clients, because in 24 short hours, we will all become registered yoga teachers. Where did the time go.
Sunday: We chanted. We danced. We partied. We cried. Gina was the first trainee to lead us through a chant. I could not hold back my tears. Then Amalia. Then Amanda. Then Caroline. We huddled. Jonathan held my toe. We had our last heated vinyasa class with Leslie as YTTs. So many tears. So much love. We shared our gratitude with our teachers. We partied at Stacy's. We became registered yoga teachers.

These eight months have been absolutely transforming. They have been stressful, beautiful, eye-opening, heart-opening, and absolutely transforming. Each and every one of us has learned so much about ourselves and each other. We have learned so much about this beautiful practice on and off the mat. When I started this training, I had no idea. No idea how much passion I would find in this practice. No idea how I would love teaching yoga more than I love teaching boot camp. No idea that those vulnerable souls that I sat with on night one would become my best friends. I love you all. So much.