Welcome to the first part of our four-part series: Yoga for Newbies
Today, we will share our journey to yoga, and how it's shaped our lives.
Of course, we share a freebie with you at the end, so you can take your first steps in your New Year of Peace & Health!
Let’s get started!
I started yoga back in high school, circa 1990 something-or-the-other. I was that weird girl at the performing arts high school who chanted, visualized and meditated in my dorm room. I continued my path throughout college and grad school, earning degrees in clarinet performance from some pretty hoity-toity music schools. Along the way, yoga was my constant companion as I strived to achieve artistic perfection and sanity during my intense classical music training. I remember roommates at Aspen Music Festival laughing and snickering as I chanted om and stretched before playing. Although it pissed me off, I continued with my practice. I knew that yoga brought me greater clarity, enhanced my technical prowess, and stemmed the tide of a nagging tendonitis that was a result of hours of rehearsals playing the bass clarinet.
Along the way , I fell in love and married a great guy I met back in junior high school. Years later, my joy turned to suffering as he developed a crippling addiction to drugs and alcohol. Yoga became my daily sanctuary as I desperately watched him struggle, feeling utterly powerless. For over a decade I experienced spiraling despair as I witnessed him suffer, eventually facing my deepest fears when we decided to divorce. As I began to resurrect my shattered life I knew that I must fundamentally change my ways, lest I repeat my own negative patterns of over-work, deception, and anxiety. Once again, I turned to yoga, diving deep into my studies; yoga helped me learn to release fear and anxiety-replacing them with love, faith, and a perspective so big that suffering turned into a flyspeck instead of an abyss. I changed my life completely, making a shift to attracting peace, friends, prosperity, a flourishing career, and new love. I share my passion of yoga with my students, it’s a blessing to help spread the light! I particularly love working with people brand-new to yoga and my awesome students in Yoga for the Special Child®.
My name is Jessica, I am twenty six years old and have five children, the oldest who is nine and happens to have Down Syndrome. The youngest is eighteen months and has been doing yoga since before she was born. My three in the middle are seven, five, and three and only do yoga when I am not looking. Oh yeah, and they are all girls. I love them with all of my heart, and although I never envisioned the life that I lead, it is mine to embrace.
I always wanted to be successful, have a lot of money, and travel whenever I wanted. When I was sixteen I got pregnant, and still thought I would have all of that. When I was seventeen, my daughter Jaylin was born with Down Syndrome and a hole in her heart, and was very sick for the first months of her life. During that time, I changed. I still wanted success and money, but they no longer mattered as much as they once did. I managed to graduate high school, and took a couple of college courses in between her and my second daughter, Georgie. After having two, my life was officially on hold. My first priority changed from earning an education to being the best mom. The birth of my daughter, Frankie came next, with Charlotte after her. When Charlotte was thirteen months old, I began thinking about doing yoga, bringing me to where I am today-on my third year of practicing yoga, working on keeping my body and mind healthy.
Yoga hasn’t exactly saved my life, but it has made it a lot more peaceful!
When I first came to yoga, I was a nervous wreck all of the time, now I am only a nervous wreck about twenty percent of the time, which has really made me a happier person. In the past I relied heavily on medication for my anxiety and depression, and while I’m not totally independent of it yet, I am getting closer. In yoga I have learned to let things go, that there is already a plan in place, and my job is just to live it and do my best. It really has taken a huge burden off of my shoulders to know that I am not in control of everything.
In a more physical aspect, learning how to breathe properly and do asanas that stimulate relaxation have really saved me time and again. I know that yoga is not magic, and I have put a lot of work into making myself better, but it is empowering to know that there are things that I can do to combat my inner demons without just passively relying on medication. I am not against medication, I still love it! It is just good to know that it is not the fix all for everything, and that I can feel even better with a few simple techniques.
It's your turn! Experience a step to a peaceful and healthy life right now!
Enjoy this free ten-minute meditation! You can sit right where you are and just listen and enjoy the peace!
Stay tuned for next Monday, when we continue our Four Part Series and share What to Expect from your First Yoga Class plus another free sample!
Please feel free to leave a comment below, we’d love to meet you!