Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Okay, so I am only a few decades late when it comes to the yoga craze, but I have discovered it now, and my life will never be the same.

I live in a quaint little neighborhood that is actually quite beautiful (on the other side, anyway, we're on the ghetto side until the Hubbin is out of school) and was built during WWI as housing for employees at the DuPont plant. The first time I drove through the neighborhood, in 2003 (prior to buying my first house there {on the nice side!} in 2004), I felt home. I knew I had to live there, and even though time and circumstances had me living elsewhere between 2005 and 2009, it has always been home to me in my heart, like nowhere else has ever been. I knew I'd be back, and I am. My husband loves it, too, and as long as we are in the Nashville area, we have no intention of leaving this neighborhood. Upgrading to a bigger house on the other side, yes, but not leaving.

One of the little gems in the neighborhood is this building:
Neighborhood yoga classes are held here, the art school that used to be a real school may years ago. 90+ years old. Good energy.

It used to be a school, and is now a little art school. I recently found out that they hold yoga classes there every Wednesday. Two weeks ago, I made up my mind to finally check it out. I convinced the Bipster to go with me just for the first time, since I am always anxious when it comes to new things. He had never done yoga either, and didn't seem that interested (he was a Marine, their idea of working out is a little more intense than yoga), but he agreed to humor me just one time. He is a pretty Zen guy (much moreso before I came along - it's very hard to keep your Zen when you're partnered with someone as wound up as I), so I hoped he would like it even though it wasn't the intensity he prefers.

We got there and the building was lovely on the inside. Hardwood floors, low light (the sun was beginning to set), and artwork all around us. Can't get that kind of atmosphere at the gym. The class was an hour and fifteen minutes long. She started us out with a bolster under our spines and we were instructed to basically melt into our mats and breathe. For about 10 minutes. Despite finding it kind of absurd at first (not to mention really difficult to stay still and empty my brain), I soon found myself relaxing... if you know me at all in real life, you might realize what an accomplishment that is in itself for me. As class went on we got into progressively more difficult moves and I surprised myself with how flexible I was, how natural this felt. My eyes occasionally met Josh's and I could tell he was enjoying it, too.

I don't know how else to explain it, except it flipped some kind of switch in my soul. I've always heard yoga is a mind-body-spirit thing, but I just never got it the few times I attempted to do it with a video. It's a completely different thing in a great setting with a wonderful instructor, being in the moment. By the time class was over, my brain was empty of all stresses and over-thinking. I marveled at the feeling of being 'normal.' I felt some kind of other-worldly, out-of-body, life-is-so-much-more-than-we-can-ever-fathom THING. When we got into the car, I burst into tears, it was that powerful. I am tearing up again just remembering.

I am very good about not judging anyone's religious path or lack thereof. I've never quite understood athiests, because for as long as I can remember I have been sure of God, though I don't go to church or label myself any one religion. But I don't judge those who don't believe (although like I said, I simply wonder how someone couldn't.) After this experience, I have to wonder how many athiests do yoga? How can you do it and not be rendered speechless and brought to tears and so aware of your spirit? There is something out there more than us. I don't know exactly what, but I know that it is. And it is good.

Like me, Josh was converted into a yoga lover. Not only is it good for my leg problems (and recommended by my Doctor), but it is so good for my soul, my brain, my sleep. Unfortunately, we were out of town last Wednesday, so we couldn't attend, but tomorrow we go back. I can't wait!


  1. That sounds so amazing and divine. I need that in my life someday. Until I find the time, can I live vicariously through your blog? (please keep blogging about it!) I can definitely see myself getting into yoga because, like you, I have a difficult time relaxing and clearing my brain. When I do, it feels heavenly. Bonus if it's exercise too!

  2. awesome. how much? and how high intensity wise? I am under doc's orders to do next to nothing...and also to loose weight so obviously a bit hard to rangle both. It is quite frustrating and I have been told yoga might be an alternative for me, although bending too much is out...so just curious.

  3. Oh yeah? Well call me a late bloomer too. After reading this post, I am now considering yoga classes too. I've been so stressed and I think I might need this to wind up, mentally, emotionally, and physically.

  4. Ashley, I never ever thought that I could be one of those people who could empty my head like that! I carry so much with me at all time - everything I've ever done wrong or perceived I've done wrong, every hurt inflicted upon me... I carry it all with me. Hopefully I will be able to leave more and more of the load behind with each class. I really think I can!

    Karla - it's $7 per class and fairly low intensity. You only do the moves that you can do - you don't have to bend or stretch or move as far as anyone else, only to your ability. However, it is a long class (75 minutes). I would suggest that if you go, you talk to her a few minutes beforehand and let her know what your issues are so she can give you alternative direction on some of the moves if needed. My knee/hip pain can be really awful at times, and I worried like heck that it would be too much for me. Wouldn't you know it, the first thing we started off with was that leg! I thought I was going to scream, but I trusted the process (since my doctor suggested it) and even though it hurt fairly badly during some of it, I left the class with my leg feeling better than it ever has in recent memory.

    Mel- Do it! You won't regret it!