Sometimes in life, when that alarm clock goes off and you sluggishly roll over to hit snooze, you can't help but pause in dread and think, “not today, Satan” (aka, alarm clock, aka life, aka “snowstorm” in “spring”. Well, that day was today for me. I had just caught my 3rd cold, or whatever, of the season and was still recovering. And of course, today was meant to be my busiest day of the week. Good ‘ol hump day. My Wednesday’s start as followed: Teach Slow Flow yoga class at 9 to 10 AM. Break. Teach Stretch & Relax at 12:15 to 1 PM. Relax. Work from 5 to 1:30 AM. The end. Now, I hate to break it to you all, but I don’t ALWAYS enjoy yoga. And today I was secretly wishing to be snowed into my comfy apartment, sacrificing any money that could be made for my laziness and melancholy feels. But, then I remembered, I must be better than that. And so, I drove my ass to class. Once noon rolled around and the snow continued to pass and go, I knew the possibility of me having the night off at this point was probably not going to happen. And so, I accepted my possible fate. And continued to move forward with the easiest challenge of my day: teach my Stretch & Relax yoga /meditation class. Let me tell you, what happens next in this story was nothing less than extraordinary, and definitely not coincidental. Well, not to me anyways. You be the judge..
This woman, let’s call her Faith, had just started yoga and had no idea what to expect with my class seeing as she had never been to it before. Simply put, Stretch & Relax includes gentle yoga stretches and ends with a guided meditation. Little did me or Faith know, we both were meant to share what was to follow within the next hour as these unusual moments continued to unfold one after another. Starting with this one..
Faith was a little chatty. I could tell she had a lot to release.. A lot of pain, tension, and stress, which she was looking to let go of. My only assumption was that this was part of the reason why she had started yoga. Which makes my heart happy, so I felt grateful to have this woman let me be her guide. Well, during the stretching part of class Faith started talking about how she was trying to let go of the past and how she was reminded of this quote while doing my breathing exercise—“Exhale the past, inhale the future” she said, as she motioned with her hands up and down her body as if she was imagining herself exhaling her past and inhaling her future. Imagine to my surprise when Faith said this aloud and I remembered that that morning I had put on my shirt that has printed these EXACT lines on the sleeves. Of course, Faith didn’t know this because I was wearing a crewneck sweater over my shirt. My eyes grew wide as I confessed this “coincidental” occurrence to her as I began to take off my sweater and show her my shirt. If you know me, you know I fiend for these moments; I really enjoy those times that the universe perfectly aligns me with another. And in this particular moment, it just reassured me that I had to make sure I made this experience extra special. So, I quickly decided once we’d transition into the meditation part of class that I would use this quote as my theme. And so the weirdness continued..
When one is really open to letting their mind step back and breath take over, real magic happens. You notice things, things you maybe couldn’t notice before. You start let go of the ego, accept what is, and enter into the realm of “Samadhi”, aka Patanjali’s 8th and final limb of yoga.
I touched on a few important things during this meditation;
1. Setting YOUR serene perfect scene. A place where you feel most at peace.
2. Repeating silently, my favorite affirmation: “You are already healed. You are already whole. You are love itself. You are peace itself.” (Thank you, Lena)
3. Chakra colors! (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Turquoise, Royal Blue, Purple)
4. Playing the singing bowls – my favorite.
Now, let's fast-forward to the end of my guided meditation, where Faith and I shared her ultimate transcendental experience.
With gentle tears in her eyes, Faith stated how she had a dear love for the ocean, so that was her place of choice. She began to explain how the ocean's salt water can be a very naturally healing thing. She voiced how even before I mentioned the affirmation, that she was having these thoughts of being healed. Well, Faith got even more freaked out when I started to ask her to repeat the affirmation which includes that line stating, “I am already healed”.
“I started to think, ok! Is this girl in my head?!” We laughed.
“And then”, she exclaimed, “before you even got into the colors, I was seeing purple!!” Little did Faith know, she was just as in tune with the present moment and her “pure consciousness” as I was. Purple ties into your crown chakra, which is located at the top of your head.
I like to go with feeling, my gut, my “higher power” if you will, always. So, it wasn’t surprising to me that all these connections had been made in such a short period of time with a complete stranger. One thing I didn't mention out loud was that while I used my singing bowls on Faith, which happened to be at the end of the meditation, I felt a heavy pull to Faith’s head. This all made sense to me once she shared her experience, tying every lovely thread together.
Needless to say, I also let go during my class. I let go of my desire to be lazy and depressed that I had to possibly go to work in shitty weather. I accepted what was and ultimately what was meant to be. Which is this moment right now. And every moment leading to now. The moment I spent alone in annoyance whilst I dragged my feet out of bed and to the studio. To the moment where I found peace and acceptance within while sharing such a divine experience with Faith. Leading to when I got the text that I would have the night off from work. And finally, to now. As my hands are at my keys. Sharing this very story with you. In fact, you too were meant to be wherever you are now, reading this very story.
Ain’t that some shit?
A very special thank you to Yoga On Union, the yoga studio that I teach at, for allowing this interaction to be possible. Juliet, you are the shit.
Also, thank you to Faith, for keeping my faith alive, reminding me that everything happens for a reason, and to find happiness in the simple things..
Oh, and also reminding me that I am one badass teacher.
And last but not least, thank you thank you thank you, to Lakshmi Rising for being that beaconing light that helped shine all this special knowledge into my head...
Liz & Lena, all my gratitude to you two very magical women. Namaste.