I was sipping my coffee this morning while reading Atlas of the Heart written by Brene Brown and was captured by this quote.
When I ventured out into the yoga world as a teacher I spent a few years trying to “fit in” to the culture of what I thought a yoga teacher was. I played the role and yet it never felt authentic.
As I gained confidence in myself and began to return home to my heart and found the deepest values that I hold dear to myself as a human, I stepped into my authentic self and realized belonging begins with me. I no longer strive to “fit in” or become someone I am not.
Instead, I am me. And I am outspoken and an advocate for others and I teach yoga from my heart, not from a book or a culture that promotes “perfection”.
I sat with a student yesterday who desperately wants to return home to her daughter but has no direction or plan to get there. She struggles with daily independent living and needs support to do the little things most of us overlook. The desperation in her eyes to find her purpose, to work and feel valued, and ultimately return to being a mom shook me. As I listened and reminded her that she has human rights to become her dreams and ambitions I realized that there I was living in my values. I was showing her what belonging means and in no way was I worried about what yoga is “supposed” to be.
Our yoga was pure union. Her and I were in union. I was in union with myself. And she was demonstrating grit in wanting to find her wholeness again and to find that belonging within herself.
That was my spiritual practice of belonging.