The last time I felt truly inspired. By Sarah A.

The last time I felt truly inspired:

I came to Y Respira not only as a complete and absolute beginner to yoga, but also during a time in which I was existing in a place inside of myself suffocated by loss, grief, pain, fear, blame, isolation, shame, depression, anxiety, and severe trauma. 

I did not understand. I could not stop crying. I never slept.  I could barely breathe. 

But there was a tiny voice inside of screaming to get better. All I wanted to do was just get better. Whatever better was. And for the first time I could actually hear that tiny voice, and for the first time I was able to listen to that tiny voice, and that tiny voice turned out to be an enormous gift. It allowed me to look inside of myself, and with looking inside of myself came learning to letting go. And with letting go came Aparigraha (non-attachment), and with non-attachment came healing. And with that healing came more healing. And that healing continues every single day. 

I can think of countless times of true inspiration I have felt throughout this journey, and I could most certainly write forever about them. I am grateful for every one of them, no matter how permanent or fleeting they were. So, for me, not overthinking choosing just one time was a challenge for a brief moment, and then it was not. Because I suddenly realized the last time I felt truly inspired was just yesterday.

“Meditations from the Mat” by Rolf Gates and Katrina Kenison is a beautifully written book composed of personal reflections and mediations around the eight limbs of yoga. It is part of Y Respira’s Yoga Teacher Training curriculum, and it is a book I find myself coming back to often, flipping open blindly to a page when I am suddenly struck with the need to. Just like yesterday. I opened to this page, a meditation from part three, dedicated to the Asanas, which are the postures of yoga.

“I came to the practice of asana with a curvature in my spine. Thousands of hours of my life have been devoted to struggling with this. On the mat, my lower back became a battleground. I fought and lost, fought and lost. My efforts to heal myself ended in debilitating back spasms. Over time, though, I began to respect my back. I marveled at it’s ability to bend backward and forward, to recover from tremendously painful injuries. Eventually I started to befriend my back, and even see it as something to be admired. I began focusing on what it could do. As this attitude developed, the need to change my back, to fight my reality, lessened, and gradually disappeared. The curvature in my back is gone, and I can’t remember exactly when it went away, because when it did, I no longer cared.”

Although in the literal aspect we were fighting something different, on a much deeper level we were not. This is what one of the most beautiful, and humbling things about Yoga is. I understand that battle, I fought that battle, and maybe, in the end, the battle is not about what we are fighting, it is about how we fight it. And that, to me, is truly inspiring.