This weekend in Yoga Teacher Training we focused on anatomy. It was a challenging weekend. There was a ton of information crammed into 18 hours over 3 days. There was very little practice, and what we did do required a lot of focus and strength.
If you read my previous post (Giving Up), you know that I got a text message in the middle of training to let me know that my sister was having emergency surgery to put a shunt in. It was incredibly difficult to focus yesterday and remain present in YTT while all of this was going on. Today, however, I did better.
The worst part about today was that I basically learned nothing yesterday because my mind was so preoccupied. As a result, I was criticized in virtually every application activity that we did today. I literally couldn’t remember any of the information that we were supposed to learn yesterday. Today, everything I did was pretty much wrong.
The best part about today was getting to form bonds and friendships with some of the girls in my teacher training. Several of us went out to lunch together, and then later we went out for ice cream after training ended. It’s nice to have friends who love yoga and ice cream as much as I do. We also all had the same feelings about the weekend: it was overwhelming.
Another thing that I liked about today was getting to see my favorite yoga teacher. It was right after lunch and everyone was setting up in the studio. My favorite yoga teacher was out in the lobby and she motioned me over. She asked me how I was doing with everything that’s going on with my sister (I had posted about it on Facebook last night asking for prayers). I was honest. I told her that yesterday was difficult; that I found it difficult to focus; but I also added that I was doing better today. My words were met with so much empathy. The first thing she said was along the lines of: wow that must be so tough for you. Most people do not acknowledge what it is like for me to go through my sister’s illness. Even I spend more time focusing on how difficult it is for her, my sister, to go through these medical issues. My favorite yoga teacher told me that it was ok that I couldn’t retain the information from yesterday. She told me that if I needed to, I could always step out for a few minutes and take some time for myself. It was like this huge weight was lifted. I didn’t have to be perfect.
A little while later, after being criticized for doing yet another thing incorrectly, I found myself getting into a restorative twist on my mat while other students presented. My favorite yoga teacher scooted over to me. She asked me if I was ok and if I needed a sandbag. I didn’t; but the fact that she recognized that I was emotionally overwhelmed in that moment was perhaps one of the sincerest acts of kindness and empathy that I have ever experienced. She really is one of the only people I’ve ever had who recognizes, acknowledges, and offers support when I am struggling emotionally. I wish there were more genuine people in the world like her.
PS: Who doesn’t love my Mad Hatter socks and Inner Space Bolster?!?! 💜
Edited to add: My frustration came not from being criticized, but with my inability to not recall or accurately apply the information that I was supposed to learn. I didn’t learn the information when it was taught because my anxiety was high and my mind was racing. I was (and still am) frustrated with my inability to remain present and focused on Saturday.