A Supermoon, the month of February, & Fibromyalgia walk into a bar…….

If you are looking for an uplifting I am sorry this is not one of them.  As we reached the end of January my emotions go all places that are associated with sadness and anything that could make me happy doesn’t….I just tend to go through the motions and hope for the best.  So, if you have made it this far and want to continue…sit back relax and figure out how the fuck I make it through everyday without killing everything.

On the last day of Jan 2018 the universe decided to have a supermoon/redmoon/bluemoon/lunarEclipse which sent me into the biggest, most intense, most painful flare up of my fibromyalgia I had ever experienced. I didn’t know my body could revolt this much causing myself and my stressed out mother to contemplate going to the ER. For those who know me personally understand that my pain tolerance is high, higher than most due to the chronic pain I have experienced in and through the passed 3-4 years. But, I have always been able to work through it. This was different. It was a constant burning, aching sensation in my back, chest, and shoulders. My hands were numb and it hurt to move. My mother tried to console me to try and not raise my blood pressure more, but nothing would help. It got to the point it hurt to inhale and exhale. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, but finally after 5 hours of this, I fell asleep and woke up 75% of the way better…..and as I finish this post I’m right back on track to being 150% better. But, it was scary. I have never and don’t want to be in that position again. I am 26 years old and should be able to take on the world and the reality is I can’t and I have to come to terms with this.

One of the biggest reasons that I despise the month of February is the passing of my older brother. Three years ago on the 21st of February my older brother Johan unexpectedly passed away. For those who don’t know my older brother struggled with depression, anxiety, and addiction for close to 10 years. He was and will forever be my best friend, the nicest man I know, and the best older brother I could have ever asked for. He was gentle, kind, caring, and just a teddy bear. I was beyond lucky to have him for 23 years of my life and I miss him every moment of every day. The pain of loosing someone doesn’t leave, it doesn’t get easier, time allows us to adapt to the grief and learn what the new normal is. He is fantastic in life and in death. And for everyone that asks if I miss him, here is my response: of fucking course I miss him, I’m a human with feelings (damn this is nice to say).

So, now you know during February when you see me just know I’m trying my best. I’m trying my best to keep it together and moving forward and maintaining some sense of sanity (even though mine is not around anymore). I am trying my best. I am trying to survive each day. And I am just trying to be a normal human (this is forever impossible). Just know I’m putting whatever I have into each day to deal with my life.

I am forever grateful for my jobs, for my life, and for who I am as a person. I wouldn’t change anything even though some days seem impossible. Thank you for reading, know that you are a special human, and we are all just trying to make it this existence.

Until next time, stay bendy.

Leah

A much needed break…

When working at so many places putting in 10-14 hour days and feeling like life has hit you in the face and leaves you wanting to crawl into a hole and slowly whither away…and let me tell you it finally did me in. I was exhausted , overworked, and not making hardly any money after paying bills. So, I had to re evaluate some aspects of my life. What was working, what wasn’t working, and what needed to change so I could be living a more successful life. So, what did I do? I quick one job and got hired at another place, decided to beef up my yoga schedule to try and get more reliable income (still working on that), and decided to just pay off two credit cards in full draining my back accounts. Some things were done in the spur of the moment, others were done with a lot of thought and consideration. I have also had to shift how I think and feel about certain aspects of my life. How I do thinks? Can I do them better? How can I take care of myself better? And the best part is…I still don’t have any answers to any questions, I’m still lost in this crazy thing called life and I have a feeling this is going to be a permanent state of mind for a while. Do I enjoy being in this confusing state, no absolutely not. But, I know that it is necessary for me to be here; even though I may not enjoy any part of it. But, with this weird state, I am in and with myself just working my life into the grave, I know that good things are on the horizon. That if I can hold out for just a bit longer, things will be happier and healthier in my life. I’ll quote journey for a second, “don’t stop believing,” and that is just what I intend to do. Until next time everyone. Light, love, & Namaste.

Leah

Are you a yogi….or are you a YOGI?

Some people have jobs…others have careers….and a few have lifestyles. Either you go to work and watch the clock, enjoy your job…but leave it at the office, or totally immerse yourself into your work. This is the same with teaching yoga. A lot of teachers completely immerse themselves into the yoga lifestyle. Feeling how the body moves with each breath. Being inspired by the different poses, becoming vegan, and much, much more. Now I personally know teachers that eat, breathe, and live yoga…which is totally fine. But, this is not my style of teaching. Personally, I focus on relaxing my clients, finding happiness, and telling my clients just to overall check in with themselves. I don’t live the yoga life style. I am a good, decent person…that tries to do the right thing. I love my job and all the awesome people I meet during it. But, I am not a total yoga expert by any means. I’m Leah, and I’m a yoga instructor. But, yoga isn’t my entire life and I’m ok with that. I love my family, friends, my amazing boyfriend. I enjoy watching documentaries and going for random adventures with my best friend Jessie. I like to sleep…a lot and I enjoy a caffeinated beverage most of the time. See, I have other people, activities, and things I like to do….other than yoga. And I don’t want to be frowned upon for that. I have a life outside of yoga and I like to keep it that way. I like the simplicity of being Leah, just Leah. Not the yoga instructor Leah…But, being someone’s family member, someone’s friend, someone’s girlfriend….being important to people in different ways. Because to me I’m not that important, I’m just Leah. The Leah that tries to hard…the Leah that cares to much…or the Leah that wants to help people all the time. So, I end this entry with a question….do you know the true you, the essence that makes you important people? Until next week….Stay beautiful, stay confident, and
stay you.

See you on your mat!

The Curvy Yogini

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Rock N Roll, A Slow Vinyasa Flow, & Let’s Get Personal…Really Personal

This week is all about new things for me, myself, my yoga practice, & just life in general. So as you see in this post I added a video to it. This week I decided to combined my two loves which are Yoga & Music. I have been singing since I could talk….but, I knew that a career in singing was not going to be possible when all the health issues I have started….and the fact that I had my neck sliced open due to my thyroid removal surgery. So, I got a degree in Political Science and I got certified to be a yoga instructor. It’s funny how life can change in an instant….for the better or for the worse. To add a very personal touch to this blog, I will talk about how I got fired from a yoga studio and I thought my teaching career and life was over. I will not mention the name of the studio, so please do not ask. A few months after getting certified to teach yoga I auditioned for (or in the real work market it is called an interview). Needless to say I got the job and was asked to teach three classes, 2 vinyasas & 1 restorative. For the first month or two everything was great, my class numbers were growing, and I was pretty happy with how it was going. But, before I knew it I has someone complain about my music. I used a non-lyrical acoustic semi popular rock/pop songs. I guess someone didn’t like it. Ok, I thought, I will just change my music…no worries. But, it wasn’t that simple…. From than on I was a target or I had a huge red X on me. Nothing I did was right, nothing I changed was right, I just wasn’t right. So, this led to my classes being review….but, the fun part was the senior manager who reviewed my classes was texting on her phone while reviewing both of my classes….and barely participated in the classes. I felt cheated, I felt like I wasn’t given a chance to succeed. I felt like my size was a problem. That the owners and senior manager thought because was plus size I couldn’t teach. So, slowly but, surely my classes were taken away from me. And I was left teaching only my restorative class. I even attended the studio’s restorative yoga training. But, really it wasn’t training….if you call the senior manager reading from a book the whole time training…than ya I got trained. I got trained by a Paul Grilley book (nothing against Paul Grilley he is an amazing Yin Yoga teacher). But, that’s the problem…he’s a wonderful Yin Yoga teacher….not a restorative teacher. In my personal opinion they are two different styles of yoga. Yin yoga is holding postures for 5 mins a piece with no props & Restorative yoga is holding the poses for maybe 2-3 mins and using all the props in the world. Both styles of yoga are great for the body, but they are different. So the training was not training, it was story time. So, after the training (if you could call it that) I thought things would be better. I am technically trained in restorative yoga so my problems should go away, shouldn’t they? Well, before I could ponder this happening I had thyroid removal surgery and was out for 5 weeks for recovery. But, I did go back to the studio at 4 weeks just to take a yoga class. Than the week after I returned and taught my wonderful Restorative Yoga class. I ended up with 25 people in the class, mostly regular students of mine. It was the biggest class of the day, week, & I believe month….so I thought, awesome I’m out of the woods….things were going to be ok. So I walk into the studio the next week & my manager pulls me aside and says the owner’s of the studio don’t want you teaching for us anymore so I am going to take you off the schedule…this will be your last class here. I was devastated….I have never been fired before, never been suspended, I don’t think I have ever gotten in trouble except for a verbal warning. But, the one thing that upset me the most was the owner’s reason to fire me. The reason was I didn’t have a restorative yoga certificate, but I took their training. So, in my opinion I didn’t get an answer to why I was fired. I still have never received my review for my restorative class….and whenever I see the owners or the senior manager they either will not speak to me, walk away from me, or will ignore me…even if I was nice to say hello to them. After I was fired….I really thought this was the end. No one will want to hire me. This isn’t the right career for me. But, I still sent out emails and I still tried to get more classes. Two months after I was fired I had 3 interview/auditions at places who actually wanted me to teach for them. I got a couple private clients that actually wanted to learn from me. I got referred to a place….yes someone actually referred me to someone to teach yoga for them. And that brings us up to today, now, the present. I currently teach at 5 different locations, I have 3 private clients, & I have a meeting next week for another teaching spot. I work 7 days out of the week, have 1 day off a month, & I am starting school back up in 2 weeks for Massage Therapy. I can’t believe how my life has turned around. Even though getting fired was awful…that door was meant to close, so all of these other doors could open. I am extremely humbled to work at so many spots. Am I perfect? Do I make mistakes? Have I messed up some stuff? YES, YES, & YES!!! I’m not a superhuman, I am just a yoga teacher….A yoga teacher who is trying to figure out her place in the world, yoga, & life. It’s hard being plus size in a size zero industry, but I have never been the type of woman to do things the easy way. So this week I challenge all of you to not take the easy way out. Make those difficult steps in life, have that crucial uncomfortable conversation, & don’t be afraid to make mistakes. Life is what you & only you can make out of it.
Until next time…stay beautiful, stay confident, & stay you.

See you on your mat!

The Curvy Yogini

Tilt Your Body Into A T For Warrior Three.

Kick off your back foot sending your chest to the ground and creating that quintessential T like shape and your body. This is the start to a basic transition  from Crescent lunge to warrior 3. Yes, it’s a difficult transition….. but, anyone can do it. But for the first time yogi thinking about different transitions and different postures that involve more than just laying down can be very overwhelming to the mind, body, and soul. So you’re probably asking me why am I bringing up a first-time yogis experience? well… I just finished teaching a class of new yogis. And to be honest it was more of a learning experience for me then I think it was for them. It sounds silly, but I do learn things from each class I teach. Even if the class was in my opinion bad or it was the best class I have ever taught. I will still learn new things, such as how to cue bodies differently….  how different bodies move to each posture … And that some people will never gain flexibility even though they have been practicing Yoga for years. I find it quite fascinating and of course a little unnerving to teach a brand new group of people Yoga for the first time. I’m always really worried that they won’t like me and that my class sucked. And I know any yogi reading this, well yogi or yoga teacher or an aspiring yogi, will say your class will never suck because it’s you you have your own style of teaching and that style is unique to you. But I know that all yoga teachers and maybe some yogis secretly judge their own yoga practice or judge their own teaching style or judge someone else’s teaching style. And again I know in yoga we practice not judgement, but even yogis and yoga teachers are human….. And humans are known to be judgmental. So maybe someone can give me insight on practicing the idea of not being judgemental. Because I judge myself in my own classes when my students aren’t getting into the pose like I want them to . And I judge myself for this because I feel like I am failing them as a teacher. Even though my students love the class. I still always feel like I can do better. Maybe I just feel like I can do better in other aspects of life. Like, can I be a better daughter, a better friend, a better student, a better girlfriend, the better patient, or just a better human being. I get it, yogis will always tell you you are a beautiful work in progress. They also will tell you, that you are exactly where you need to be in life, in your yoga practice, in your relationships, or just overall you are in the exact, perfect, and beautiful spot that you need to be.   They will also tell you that fate led you to this Yoga class. I don’t know if I necessarily believe that. Even though I am a yogi and yoga teacher, even though I am spiritual, and even though I’m Reiki trained……. I am still an atheist . So I don’t think that you are drawn to go to a yoga class. I don’t think most the time that you had a higher power guiding you to the yoga class. I like to believe that you wanted to go. You as a yogi wanted to go learn something new on your mat. You did this for you not because some higher power pushed you to it. You went into the class hoping to learn something new, just as I or any other yoga teacher go in to teach a class and hope to learn something from their students. I never take anyone who comes into my class for granted. I always make sure they succeed and yoga. I do this because I know how it feels to be looked at like I’m the fat girl in the room. So this week I hope you and I will try to do this as well be more non judgmental towards people. Because you don’t know what they have to go through. You don’t know if they have issues they have to deal with. So I’m going to take it on myself to be less judgemental and to try to learn as much as I can from my students. And maybe if I learned enough information from my students, then maybe I will be able to achieve my perfect warrior three. Until next week yogis .
See you on your mat!

The Curvy Yogini