Yesterday was my 35th birthday and this year, as the occasion approached I spent much time reflecting on the last decade. Rewind 10 years to 25 and I was in a very different place. Caught up in the fast paced competitive consumer lifestyle I was working full-time, leave and returning home in the dark and on-call over weekends. I was underweight, undernourished, extremely anxious, angry, stressed and downright miserable. Not to mention my self medicating habit that saw me stoned more often then not.
Something had to give, and at first it was me, until I could barely function. Then, something had to change, and again it had to be me. So what changed? Well, fundamentally not much really. I am of course still me, but during my 25th to 26th year I moved through a massive time of reassessment to begin the journey that has lead me to where I am today. Peeling back the layers I began to get down to the real nitty gritty of what was truly important to me, and it wasn’t a high flying career. The wish to live a slow consciously lead life was at the centre of it all.
There are many things that facilitated this change and re focus of direction; a massive reduction in work hours (that eventually lead to a complete career change), choosing to lead a healthier life, re-ignited my passion for gardening, exercise and of course my introduction to YOGA by my first and beautiful teacher Bonnie. Now, it would be foolish to say that the last 10 years, since yoga entered my life, have been smooth sailing and nothing but bliss. These years have seen some of the most challenging events in my life to date. What yoga has given me is the resilience to recover from these events and remind me how to return to centre, or at least, to within the boundaries of centre.
My practice has evolved and been a constant through these years. Years that have delivered two children into my life and challenged the foundations of my closest partnership. Yoga has not only calmed the fluctuations of my mind, it has calmed the fluctuations of my life. When a rock has been thrown into calm water rather then drowning or being swept away by the massive waves that are initially stirred up (as I have done and could so easily do) this practice has helped me ride out the waves and trust that in time they will again settle. Although at times the pendulum of life swings high and wide this path gives me the foresight to know that I can fuel it to keep swinging with the same ferocity, or, I can focus my attention to start slowing it down and brining it back to a more manageable level.
Here’s to another trip around the sun with yoga as my guide.
Prenatal and Postnatal Yoga Teacher
Classes in Murwillumbah, Cabarita Beach and Ipswich