My Yoga Journey

Reading has always given me peace. Novels offer a fictional escape into another time, place, or set of circumstances and possibilities that can soothe or minimize real life’s ups and downs. Nonfiction books, about topics as varied as history and spirituality, expand my perspective with new information. The purpose of my book club posts has been to share what I am reading, and how it has inspired me as I slowly chip away at writing a novel of my own. My last book club post, reviewing Radiant Rest by Tracee Stanley, got me thinking about how important Yoga has been to me throughout my life. So, here’s a bit about my yoga journey!

The Beginning

My mom practiced Yoga when I was a little kid. Some of my earliest and fondest memories are of practicing Yoga side by side with her on a blanket spread on the living room floor in front of the TV, following along with a PBS fitness program. We were definitely partaking in the 1990s fitness trend, and practiced other trendy workouts like step aerobics, too. My mom had a real stepper, I used a step stool more appropriate for my height, as I was four years old or so at the time! To me, at that age, Yoga was a fun activity that I did with my mom. Little did I know that the joy that Yoga’s postures, meditation, and relaxation gave me was exactly the effect that it was meant to have on all its practitioners no matter at what age they discover it. Yoga made a mark on me, then, as something I could turn to whenever I needed to rediscover joy and wellbeing.

 In my teen years, I sometimes practiced what I remembered of those early practices with my mom, but I didn’t have any resources to guide me. Yoga was still out there, of course, but the fitness boom no longer extended to handy ‘practice along’ television shows, and I didn’t have any books or magazines about the subject. When really taxed by homework, bullies, or some other vicissitude of teen life I would try to recreate what I now know to be meditation, Savasana (final rest pose), Legs Up the Wall pose done hanging off the couch, or Child’s Pose, but it was difficult to create and maintain a consistent practice in those years.

Return to Yoga

I truly returned to Yoga when I was an adult, around 24 years old. I worked very long and late hours, recurring sinus infections plagued me for nearly a decade. Long after the symptoms of one particular sinus infection at the beginning of 2014 cleared up, I remained persistently fatigued. I couldn’t stand walking around like a zombie, and resolved to do something to get my energy back. Months before, I’d had a co-worker who raved about practicing hot yoga, and how much it helped her with chronic pain.  The difference in how cheerful and pain-free she was when she’d practiced Yoga over the weekend was remarkable. Anyone could see it really helped her. I wasn’t in pain, per se, but I figured Yoga might help, and it was making a resurgence in popularity at that time. I bought some magazines and DVDs, and quickly rediscovered the peace and joy I had known as a child when I was on the mat. Tension left my joints and spine, I found relief and relaxation in Savasana, and pride in myself as I began to competently perform asanas that initially challenged me, like Downward Facing Dog.

Yoga is Everywhere

I have kept up the practice that I renewed at 24, over the years. I have practiced Yoga very nearly every day in the last eight years, but what I have truly discovered is that once we set out on the path of Yoga, there is very little that we do that is not Yoga. Everything we do in life has the potential to unite us in the harmony that Yoga seeks between our most obvious self-our mind, our awareness of the world around us-with a higher peace than we’d ever dream possible if we were not striving for it, and tasting samples of it along the way as the fruit of our efforts, as inconsistent as these glimpses of peace may sometimes be.

We can find that peace in the asanas we perform on our mat, in meditation or relaxation, but if we commit to the moment we’re in, we can have this same full bodied awareness and confident peace in a conversation with a loved one, at work, while reading a book. Color and sound can burst into vibrant depths of beauty if we truly focus on the wind shaking the green leaves of a tree. A hot bath with salts and bubble bath can be a fragrant paradise if we hone our minds to inhabit it fully. Yoga has always helped me enjoy life more, renewing my commitment to feel my best, do my best, and see the best in the moment. Yoga, for me, is everywhere! 

One response to “My Yoga Journey”

  1. […] so pleased that the response has been so favorable to my post My Yoga Journey. It took on a life of its own in a way that I didn’t foresee, and in the wake of that I pondered, […]


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