Last week I went to see the film, Gloria Bell with my college buddy, Jamie. I found myself cringing in my seat several times as the title character went through her routines. Deftly played by Julianne Moore, Gloria is a divorced, middle-aged woman with grown children. I put my hands over my eyes more than once during the film because I recognized so much of myself being played out on the big screen for the whole world to see.
Like me, Gloria:
Sings along with tunes from her youth while driving
Goes to yoga class
Participates in Laughter Yoga
Goes dancing alone on a regular basis
Feels disconnected from her kids
Has trouble navigating the dating scene
Sometimes feels empowered
Is searching for meaning and hope in this untethered chapter of her life
It was uncomfortable because Gloria is depicted as someone who is loosing the game of being on their own.
Last week was a bit rough for me.I attended two funerals of people associated with my growing up in Richmond - reminding me of my own mortality, sense of loss and abandonment. My youngest turned 19 - a wonderful occasion fraught with mixed feelings for me (I miss the child while embracing a new adult human). My bank account is currently reflecting a low in the typical financial roller-coaster ride of a new business which is much less than my actual value, causing some nail biting around bill paying. I suffered from untrue thoughts of inadequacy and rejection.
There is actually nothing wrong with me. I am simply having a human experience which sometimes feels confusing, overwhelming, lonely.
This is just the way it is sometimes.
Often people comment on how I seem to have it all together. “You are so calm,” they will say. “It must be the yoga.” My inner dialog when this happens is, “In this moment, “ and “Yes”.
More often than not in these days of redefining myself as an empty nester and entrepreneur, I have a spinning ball of anxiety lodged in my chest. I know this because this inner tornado has been popping in and out of my life, wrecking havoc, for as long as I can remember.
Fortunately, the whole-istic practice of yoga has CHANGED my life for the better. I have my ups and downs like everyone but now I have the tools to help me get through all of it with graceful ease and acceptance.
What is truly awesome is passing those tools along to my clients so they too can experience the physical, mental and spiritual benefits of the broader practices of yoga. Observing how these tools can help them calm down and be present in the moment so they can make better decisions about what actions to take (if any) and how to approach that action.
Below is a section of an email I received just as I was writing this post from Deborah A. She is describing how she is using some yoga tools and mindfulness practices learned in our coaching explorations and her own inspired pursuits to be more accepting of others in a stressful situation :
“I think without the work we have been doing and the Eckhart [Tolle] reading, I would have definitely sunk. There were so many opportunities for me to get hooked, try to control things, and start to get down on myself and others. I have started to identify all of these moments as lessons, a chance for me to practice what i've been learning, and giving myself credit for any places I see myself doing something differently than I might have at an earlier time in my life.”
Another great result of our co-creating together is her body is beginning to free up and move with more ease.
Hearing about these successes augments my bag of yoga tricks in keeping me going when things seem impossible. Knowing that what I am doing helps people get out of the emotional and/or physical pain they are in and into a place that feels better is a true gift.
Who do you know who is suffering and could use some help to find a more easeful overall existence?
I invite you to share this post with them and they can decide for themselves if they would like to contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to determine if I can be of service because Yoga works.
With abundant gratitude,
PS: I will be leading a special Mother’s Day Yoga practice at Athleta in Short Pump Town Center Mall on Saturday May 11th at 8:30 AM. Contact Jen at Athleta to register: 804-360-2096.