Yoga as the Journey and the Destination
Homelessness, hearing-loss, and a hurricane. These are a few of the things that could have stood in the way of achieving my dream to become a yoga teacher. Luckily, yoga gave me the strength and the heart to stay on my path.
Yoga was introduced to me while I was on a sabbatical in 2007. I was fasting, meditating, and studying different religions. I then came across a coffee-table book called, Living Yoga by Christy Turlington which led me to practicing Rainbeau Mars’ DVD called Yoga for Beauty Dusk and Dawn. My youngest daughter knew the routine by heart.
Later I relocated and practiced Bikram yoga three times per week with my eldest daughter. It was her gym activity while she was being homeschooled. Later in 2010, I completed a 3-day intensive Rainbow Kids Teacher training with Gopala (https://rainbowyogatraining.com). We covered acrobatic yoga and partner yoga; and it was fun, colorful, and challenging.
Then life happened while in pursuit of happiness. I surrendered allowing nonattachment. While homeless/carless and couchsurfing, I stayed working, managed to finish massage school, and worked my way back to a home, a car and back with kids and tried an online yoga teacher training in 2015, where we would meet up virtually via online group chats and phone conferences (https://www.yoga4love.com/).
In 2019, I faced more adversity with Hurricane Harvey and my son’s recent brain surgery. I managed to still dedicate myself to fasting and completing the one-week yoga teacher training at The Yoga Institute founded by Lex Gillan in Houston, Texas. There, it was hands-on learning, daily teaching (creating longer sequences each day), with insight from old and new students. It was a great challenge because I am hard of hearing. Oftentimes people with hearing loss are skeptical. They wonder, “How will I be able to follow along in class if I can’t hear the instructor?” or “Will my hearing aids stay on during the postures?” I didn’t let my hearing loss stop me.
Not only are the physical benefits of yoga (stronger muscles and improved flexibility) important, the mental benefits are also numerous. Yoga at its best, combines physical postures with a philosophy of patience and self-acceptance, which can come in very handy when dealing with the day-to-day frustrations of hearing loss.