There is a Yoga teacher at my studio - she looks just like my mother.
Or, what I imagine my mother to look like these days.
She has a soft face and her features are feline. She dances her mystical eyes across the new bodies in the room, smiling with her eyes and exuding radiance of peace.
Smouldering with passion for her art.
She guides us through our practice and looks over at me knowingly more than a few times – I am not sure whether this is part of her teaching technique or whether this is directly for me, because it enables me to feel grounded within this room where I am supposed to free my soul.
I feel safe inside her warm lit eyes and I finally let myself go.
It’s then I notice the girl at the front of the class – who’s stare could bore a whole into your head.
she is balancing on one leg and holding her arms as high as they can possibly be and, whilst this is a very impressive stance – it is not necessary nor is it related to the yoga pose the class is holding…
She is there to show the class how good she can be, how high her kick can go and how long her hamstring can withstand the weight of the hatred that is clearly beating from within her.
She is a shell, and I see it now – demonstrating her flexibility and knowledge of the art form whilst losing the essence and beauty of it by doing exactly that.
I tilt my head at her for a moment and she catches my eye.. when I give her a knowing yet pitying smile. It is such a shame that we can lose sight of the one place where we are to be ourselves by adhering to the pressure and status that people feel compelled to create within a peaceful environment.
This is not a football game, this is not an Olympic gymnastic squad and it is not a team sport. You should have nothing to receive from the person next to you but their energy, which dances about the room as it exudes from their exhale- willing another to take it in and use it in a better way.
I look at this girl again, while she feeds her eagle and touches her head to the carpet.
How insecure she must be. How sad it is that she can only achieve fulfilment at the judgement and reaction of others. How cold it must be between the hours that she can come and dance to find her warmth within.
She leaves the class fulfilled; I’m sure- But for all the wrong reasons.
I used to watch these girls at Yoga, and feel the need to stretch as high as, lean as low, and pull my body into shapes I could not fit.
I am that girl. I was that girl. I am not anymore.
I lay down on my mat and take my meditation time to think. Vinyassa is my moment of clarity.
The instructor walks between the mats and let’s everyone know that this moment is for them, to do with what they choose..
Whatever pose they would like to create and master before the end of the class, the ones they have not had a chance to hold. Now is the time to do the one thing you want to make sure you got everything you could from this class.
The room raises in forms of Tetrus shaped figurines.. the body’s mould and merge into puzzle piece of arms and legs.
Bridge, Wheel, Waterfall, and me. I lie there, doing nothing.
Suspended in the contentment of that moment.
The first time I have felt that I do not need to hold my final pose in order achieve anything, because it is already done, within me.