Nearly three years ago I went to my very first yoga class. I actually went to an Adult Learning College and took a ten week class for beginners. As I had just arrived in the USA I thought it would be a great way to meet new people and make new friends. I was the youngest in the class by about 30 years, so I didn’t make many new friends, but I did meet some wonderful people. I was excited to be trying a new fitness ‘thing’. What I didn’t expect from this course was what I would learn about myself.
I arrived 2 minutes late for the very first class (whoops!!!) and everyone was lying down…was I in the right class? So I lay down my mat and followed along. The teacher was trying to explain to us the importance of breathing in yoga. As we followed along with inhales and exhales, I began to laugh at myself, this was way too hippy for my liking. I felt uncomfortable just closing my eyes and following my breath. The teacher asked as to think about each breath as we inhaled and exhaled, not about what we were going to have for dinner, or that work project, or that friend you need to call back. Just to focus our attention on the air flowing in the mouth, down the throat, expanding the lungs and back out again. Suddenly, I was lost in the present moment. My mind was quiet. I don’t remember the last time my mind had truly stopped racing….even when I sleep I dream a lot. Little did I know this was my first step towards a love of yoga and a new skill of meditation.
After several terms at the Adult Learning College I decided I was no longer a beginner and so joined a nearby yoga studio. The classes were small, often there were just a couple of us so there was a lot of teacher attention, it was great!!! One of our teachers liked to share with us some of her favourite motivational readings, and from this I discovered even more about myself as I took the time to listen and contemplated the reading after the class in the car on the way home. It was so peaceful.
The one thing that I have learned from yoga is that happiness is now. It lies in the present moment. It can be found quite easily when I allow my mind to rest and take the focus of my attention of my concerns and problems, and allow my mind o relax and remain in the moment. I find breathing techniques help me do this quite well.
I learned that happiness cannot occur when we attach conditions to meet it. As this is an infertility blog, a good example is….. “I will be happy once I finally have a child in my arms”. It is too easy to fail to recognise the feeling of happiness for what it is and inadvertently let it drift away with our thoughts of the future, looking for happiness somewhere else.
I discovered that after my yoga classes I felt a wave of warmth and happiness within myself.
I need to find this feeling again…My yoga studio went bust last year and there isn’t another one that is as close, so I have found excuses. I could do it myself, use online videos, but I enjoy being lead to that feeling and some times I find it difficult to motivate myself on to the mat. But excuses no more! Inner happiness in the present I shall find!!!