I arose on October 28 with a newfound sense of accomplishment, for my ability to actually find the inner strength to finish 120 days of consecutive yoga practice — despite years of turmoil from divorces, loss, death, financial ruin, cancer and betrayal. I realize this may seem utterly ridiculous to those who were born with discipline and determination, who would consider my challenge a cakewalk. We don’t need pats on the back for brushing our teeth everyday or taking a shower, so why would we expect accolades for doing 120 days of consecutive yoga as a personal experiment in self-love, forgiveness and discipline? Indeed, many would scoff at someone who felt the need to embark on a yoga quest that involved counting days of practice vs. naturally integrating yoga’s gentle rhythm into everyday existence.
Anyone who scoffs has not lived my life, and this is where compassion enters the picture. I was shocked at the reactions I received from some self-appointed spiritual people – including teachers – whom I encountered during my journey, and the judgment that my 120 days evoked in them.
Despite this, October 28 was sweet for me. My 120th day of practice was spent in an early morning goddess class with five beautiful women in a nurturing, supportive environment. The class was fluid, filled with laughter and grace. The teacher, Honeybee, is pixie-cute with a fairy-like twinkle in her eyes that spells mischief! She has a gentle kindness to her manner and her class was perfect for my last day of my yoga journey. To me, it reflected my own journey as a woman, as a being who chose to incarnate into female form at this time of transition and transformation on earth.
The practice of yoga, especially Bhakti yoga, has been the missing link to finding my inner calm and balance in what has been a turbulent life experience. It is a practice that is forever, and it belongs to everyone – not just the lithe, beautiful models that grace the covers of yoga magazines. It’s for young girls, moms, grandmothers, young men, dads and grandfathers. It is for those with pounds to lose or pounds to gain, for those struggling with disease or enjoying wellness, for those with all of their limbs and those without. It is a celebration of the human condition in all its forms and iterations in any given moment in time. It is one that I truly hope each of you reading these words will experience in your own way and your own time as you celebrate the teacher within. My wish for you as you embark upon, or continue your yoga journey, is for shelter, a nourishing supply of food for your body and soul, and clean fresh water to drink. I wish you friendship, fellowship, wellness, peace, grace, self love, ananda (bliss) and the unconditional love of the divine. I hope you begin to realize your own inner samadhi, as you enjoy the lila, the enchanted dance of your existence.