Hello readers, I am back.  I hit a little slump, but I was taking some needed downtime chatarangabetween semesters, between the holidays and inauguration, and now that classes started again, it is time to join the world once more. I just read this on one of my favorite blogs, Living Oprah, and it really spoke to me:

And before I move on to talk about today's Oprah episode, I want to share this week's assignment: I am committing to STOPPING comparing myself to other women. I know this is not as easy as shrugging it off for a week. But, I am committing to the beginning of the process. I think this week will be mainly about become aware of WHEN I compare. I've noticed the only place I don't focus on my body or abilities in comparison to others is the yoga studio. I see my students as bones and muscles and injuries and breath and in the studio, I see my own body as a tool to teach. I wish I felt this way in all other aspects of my life. I believe I compare and contrast my finances to other women, my career, my home, my abilities, my physical self, my choice not to have kids at this point in my life even though I'm (gulp) edging toward "a certain age." I'm going to carry around a journal this week and make a note of everytime I weigh myself against another woman. I'm scared. And I'm a little nervous to tell you everything I find. But, I think it's for the best to commit to being transparent with this.

I think this might be my new mantra for 2009, instead of whatever theme I chose, then promptly forgot...Oh yes, I think it's just going to be: 2009, A Big Year (inauguration, wedding, thesis, graduation).  Anyway...back to this quote...

yogaI find that yoga is also the place that I can most be myself, free of judgment.  I've been practicing for over a year, attending classes a few times a week.  I find that when I look around the room to see who is good at a pose, or who has on the cutest Lululemon stuff or even who has the greatest yoga body ever, I find that I immediately lose my balance, or breathing, or just fall out of that yoga...thing that happens.

When I just concentrate on how strong and bendy my own body is, and take the time to recognize what is working, what isn't, and what I could do to be stronger in my next class, I get that yoga...thing.  In fact, when I am going to class 4 and 5 times a week, I am cranky and judge-y of myself and others on the days that I miss.

Sadly, I can't spend every day in the studio.  I have other things I have to do so that my world keeps on moving.  Maybe after I graduate I can get teacher training, but until then I will just have to retain yoga as my little oasis, and learn to bring that feeling into my everyday life.

PS this is  chataranga