Yogi in training…

It is my daughter Anjali’s eighth summer on this planet. She is growing and thriving and I am…well, I am rediscovering myself. I am less needed by my daughter, and freer to open up space within myself. I am also needed in a different way, and navigating the balance between boundaries and freedom. So, here I am. And here you are. Supporting me on this journey of love, creativity, transformation, discovery and ultimately freedom! Welcome if you are new to my writing, and welcome again if you are a beloved friend, and thank you!


My daughter Anjali and I spent this past weekend at Kripalu center for yoga, she in a yogi arts program and I chose a program called dance into joy! My husband had been away the past week and it seemed like a perfect thing to do together. She is old enough to appreciate and practice yoga on her own and I was excited to revisit an old beloved place of retreat. 

Here is a question for you to ponder: Can it be a retreat when you are with your child?

That question was a question I would investigate all weekend: how can I nourish myself while supporting my daughter in her own play and nourishment. It is in fact a question we as care-givers navigate a lot in our lives. Being in a structured environment allowed me to see my mind and how it struggled with this balance, more clearly.

For starters, in all of the effort in getting to Kripalu with Anjali, and getting her and me settled into the room, and getting her to the program, When I finally got to mine, I realized I had not even paused to contemplate what I was entering into! I think of myself as a naturally joyous person, but when I entered the room, I was certainly not feeling the euphoria that seemed to be emanating from my fellow participants and my teachers. I felt skepticism, and tiredness, a subtle judgment, and definitely not joy. Dancing that night was amazing. But also opened up a few sore spots within. 

Second, coming to your retreat is NOT the same as coming by yourself, meaning you can’t do all the things you would have done by yourself. In a moment of weakness, I forgot that too! (Tired brain, remember?). Massage is a weakness of mine, I love getting them, and Kripalu’s Ayurvedic massages is definitely one of my favorite kind! I scheduled a massage at one of the only available times, at 7.00 in the evening on Saturday. Anjali was not happy when she heard about this late Friday night. And it caused me a lot of angst in causing her discomfort. After she fell asleep, all of those inner critical voices joined together. How could I leave her alone in the room (no matter that it was on the same floor)? What if there is a fire alarm? Surely leaving my child alone can qualify as negligent parenting. My voices were insistent and relentless. It was past midnight when I finally fell asleep that night, too tired to struggle. Saturday morning I was ready to cancel my appointment, about to head out, when Anjali stopped me. She said, “Mom, don’t cancel. You love this. You should do it. I got this.” She truly did. She saved my day. That massage was not the best I have had: it was hard to completely let go of my worries, though I tried to surrender as best as I could and kept relaxing my body. When I got back, there was my baby, ready for bed, in her pajamas, reading. It was a priceless moment, I felt so moved, appreciative and so grateful! Transformed by my appreciation for her wondrous gift!

Sunday came upon us, gorgeous! My last session was when I discovered the euphoria. It was there. Just hidden underneath layers of comfort, habit and complacency. It emerged, beautiful, like a butterfly, transforming me from within. My kindred spirits in the workshop held the container for me while I went through this journey. I felt gratitude, exhilaration and generosity. That afternoon, I took Anjali to the lake, where my watery child swam with fishes and exuded exuberance! And we did the labyrinth one last time before saying good bye to Kripalu. Hope to return again next year!

Namaste, S.

My last session was when I discovered the euphoria. It was there. Just hidden underneath layers of comfort, habit and complacency. It emerged, beautiful, like a butterfly, transforming me from within.

1 thought on “Yogi in training…

  1. Pingback: The spiritual communities that sustain us… – Dharma notes…

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