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Yoga Teacher Training Journal 6/07/2008

Posted Jan 14 2009 8:53pm
I found the question below in my yoga teacher training book and decided to tackle it. Because my entry ended up focusing on MS I have chosen to copy it here.

1) Why are you attending this training?

Ever since my first power yoga class with Dave Porter three Mays ago I have loved yoga. My deep passion for the practice soon led me to a desire to become an instructor. I wanted to train last summer but I got married, went on my honeymoon and worked a lot. In retrospect, I don’t really think I was ready until now. I have always had a strong Hatha practice, but I struggled with Pranayama and meditation.
Then, in March 2008, I broke my sternum and could hardly practice. This was followed by a vacation and a prolonged illness. Through all of these obstacles, I kept thinking, “I am being tested.” I had this feeling that training would not be an easy thing for me but that it would force a great deal of personal growth out of me. I was ready for the challenge!

On April 23rd I learned that I had two lesions on my brain and I was diagnosed with MS. The first thing my husband asked the doctor was, “Can she still train to be a yoga teacher.” The doctor said I could and I calmed down almost immediately.

My troubles did not end there though. I spent almost another month feeling very ill with vertigo, numbness, insomnia, cognitive failings, difficulty moving my body etc… Then, one night things changed.

I was lying awake in the middle of the night. I was afraid to move or sleep because the nausea and vertigo I was experiencing was so intense. Finally, I turned onto my stomach. I thought I was going to hurl, the pain in my shoulders and neck was awful. I wanted to cry but instead I took a deep Ujjayi breath (in yoga this means breathing in and out through the nose in deep calming breathes). I felt something in my neck release. I tried another breath. Something else released. I kept breathing deeply and telling myself I was going to be ok. I moved into position after position on the bed, breathing into each spot until the vertigo passed. When it had faded I continued to breathe while I massaged my whole body top to toe and took tiny drops of “Bach’s Rescue Remedy.” At the end of two hours I believe I had “healed” myself and started the remission process for my flare up.

When the "healing" was over I was not even sure what had happened. Did I channel my “teachers” and they helped me? Did the prayers of others save me? Did my selfless prayers for others save me? Did I have the healing power inside of me all along? I am not sure that I will ever know or if it matters. When I got up on the morning of May 10th for my student’s high school graduation, I felt much better and I was steady enough to walk down onto the floor in a gown and watch my students graduate. I cried about ten times during the graduation because I was so overwhelmed with gratitude for the gift of life and health that I had just received. Everything was beautiful. Everyone was beautiful. I was so grateful to have another chance at life.

That night of healing was like a yoga master class. I felt as though I had completed those 200 hours of training before me in one night. Actually attending the training now seemed the natural next step...
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