** This entry is part of my seasonal self-care series, ‘fALLing in love with me’, where I am trying to be more accepting of my self-perceived flaws and look at them as endearing quirks that make me who I am. I want to learn to love me…..ALL of me because I am wonderful, wise, and worthy. **
I love yoga – I mean, puffy heart it something fierce! I started my personal practice again several months back and I go 3-4 times a week. Every.week. I will even be attending a fabulous yoga retreat at the end of October and I am elated. But, I have recently entertained two doubts that cropped up and cast shadows on my practice. I almost vlogged this post but am still tender about it, so the written word is going to get me through this. And I won’t delete it, I pinky swear.
I am the big girl in class. (Andy will hate this part. He won’t allow me to talk negatively about myself, so let me clarify: this is fact, not negativity.) I wondered if this would be the case before I attended my first class and it was. Everyone is really lovely and we are all just trying to stay on our mats but, as I tuck myself into certain poses and catch a glimpse in the mirror, I sometimes feel like a lump on the mat. I try to quickly give myself credit that I am even in class and remind myself that I am more than the exterior reflected back and I love yoga, my classmates, my instructor. But I have to admit, there is still shame in my heart when I look into that mirror.
I am weak in body; I should stop before I fall off the mat. I stay in a constant state of inflammation (thank you, MCTD!) and my muscles are always tense but I attempt every pose and try to maintain them. I know my yoga practice will only benefit me and helps me deal with MCTD but when I am on the mat and my muscles are screaming at me or not cooperating, my first response is to think: “This is it – the last time……I can not do this.” Then, we swing into Sitting Pigeon and I know we are on the end of class and the finish line is near. After we complete our class my body feels like I have had an internal massage and I know I have to be at the next class.
As my yoga teacher advises: I am trying to find the strength, not the weakness.
I realize my arms support me while in plank. My shoulders, tense as they may be, aid in Bridge. My legs, even if shaky at best, hold me up as I come up to Warrior I and II. I am a fierce Warrioress trying to have gentle eyes and an open heart. xo