I never wanted to practice yoga. 🧘🏻♀️
Like many, I thought it was just stretching-and some inhaling & exhaling.
Also like many people,I have a stressful career. As a dentist, most people are not happy coming into the office. Understandably-the procedures are sometimes uncomfortable & invasive many experience anxiety in the chair .
Two years ago, I found myself struggling with migraines, pain in my neck & back, sore hands & tired feet.
I had little patience & always felt stressed out. My husband (who just started his own practice after years of football caused his many muscle aches and pains) suggested I try yoga.
I walked into @medwellspa and yoga studio in Wantagh one morning, where of course as a beginner, I set up my mat all the way in the back in a corner. The instructor was friendly & welcoming. She guided the students through the practice in a calm, confident manner & encouraged us to smile and focus on how our bodies FELT rather than how we looked.
Afterwards,I thought to myself : maybe there IS something to this yoga. A moving meditation? Breathing into the body ? RESTING in savasana ? And my body still felt as if I “worked out”?
This can’t be real!
Yoga became a bit of an obsession. Every moment I had free, I went to a class. I loved that it challenged me- physically, mentally- even spiritually. After an early morning vinyasa, hatha or ashtanga , I felt more patient, calm and energized throughout the day; an evening class provided relief from a stressful workday & a better nights sleep.
I decided to enroll in yoga teacher training at Medwell starting in the Fall of 2019. It changed my life. I learned so much about the origins of yoga, philosophy, meditation, mudras, mantras,singing bowls, sequencing, themes, overcoming fears ... the list goes on and on.
At 40 years old, my body physically feels stronger than ever. But it is the internal work in that I am the most proud of. Yoga has taught me kindness ,compassion, patience and gratitude for myself & others. Finding stillness of the mind through the breath and the postures.
Yoga is my sanctuary- on and off the mat. 💫 Grace O'Connor