21) Outfit of the Day
cropped tank: aritzia
pencil skirt: American Apparel
bracelet: a local Toronto artist whose name I’m unfortunately blanking on
18) Thankful Thursday
I’m thankful for visits with my family. And for them taking care of Kaylee so I can go on a little escape.
I’m thankful for the quiet in my house right now without her, because it reminds me how much I appreciate having her around.
I’m thankful for sweet presents from sweet friends.
(a new arm band that actually fits my phone!)
For everything-but-the-kitchen-sink smoothies that don’t end up brown.
9) Outfit of the day
I worked a double yesterday, so I was in a black cocktail dress (http://aritzia.com/en/product/harmonie-dress/50977001.htmlthis one in fact) for most of the day, but this is what I threw on to go to the dog park in the morning.
Tunic: h&m (I may or may not have slept in it)
Glasses: Boss Orange
I’ve decided that I’m definitely giving myself a pass on the blog every day thing on days that I work a double shift. Something about 14 straight hours at work makes me feel pretty entitled to taking a pass on pretty much everything else that day.
5) Top five highlights from summer
1. Bali. Duh.
2. Weekly roadtrips to visit someone awesome.
3. Sunday morning yoga in the park.
4. Cottage visits with amazing friends.
5. Realizing I can pop up into headstand every.single.time.I.try now (this used to feel soooo unachievable)
6) Six things about fall you’re looking forward to
1. A trip out east to visit one of my dearest friends.
2. Starting to work with my very first private yoga client – so exciting!
3. Hikes through High Park with Kaylee.
4. Mocassins. Boots. Warm socks. I loooooove being barefoot most of all, but something about fall footwear makes me super happy.
5. Crisp fall nights.
6. Cozy comfort foods. Soups, stews, roasted veggies, pumpkin everything.
I did it!
Today I taught my first full-length class to the group. And it was awesome.
One of the major evaluation aspects of this training is (obviously) your ability to lead a class. We’re fortunate to get two opportunities to do this, the first counting as a practice, then again a few days later to actually be evaluated on. For most of the people here at this YTT (myself included), this is their VERY FIRST time doing anything like this, so having a practice class is a really awesome tool. Post-class, our instructor gives feedback on what you did well, and what could use improvement. And after lots of hugs and high fives, you can also persuade your classmates to let you know what they thought.
I’ve been working on my sequence in my head since day 1. Or maybe even before then – just kind of taking a mental note of anything that I really loved in a class I’ve attended. I used to do this to tuck it away for the times when I would practice by myself at home, but I definitely noticed myself doing it in more of an “I want to steal this” way in the weeks leading up to this training. So once it came time to actually program my own class, my problem wasn’t knowing where to start, or trying to fill an entire 60 minute slot, it was what to leave out so I wouldn’t go over my time!
I finally whittled it down to 60 minutes, then it was time to work on my music. First playlist draft? 2 hours, 26 minutes. Oh. Good. Once I got the music situation not only under control, but to a PERFECT 59:05, my lovely roommate was kind enough to let me teach her my class. I was nervous, and unsure of myself, and all those other icky feelings. After the first go-through, I was totally rattled. Everything that sounded so good and so smooth and so automatic in my head was really, really hard to put into words that would come out of my mouth. I couldn’t figure out my cues, much less get left and right straight (this is something that’s been hard for me my whole life – I make a big ‘L’ with my index finger and thumb at least once a day – so I don’t know why it was surprising). Kind of the way it feels when I start speaking French to someone. I know that I know it, and it’s perfect in my head, but it just won’t come out right.
Something weird happened though. I didn’t worry about it. As in, I didn’t keep practicing it. Not in my head, not out loud to myself, and certainly not to anyone else. Until last night. I “taught” roomie and another girl, and it was better. Still, I lay awake far past my bedtime (which has been 10:30 here), totally nervous. I slept poorly, and woke up way before my alarm (so as not to waste precious stressing time on silly things like sleep). I was the 4th girl to teach today, so I made my way through 3 other practices, trying to really give each of them my full attention, mostly failing miserably since I was so stuck in my head. Then, it was my turn. I got everyone set up, tucked my little cheat sheet under the corner of my mat, and pressed play on my iPhone. I decided to start my class with a short reading, channeling one of my favourite teachers from home. For the first few lines, my voice shook. I felt that little sting of tears welling up like they always do when I’m in a situation where I feel overwhelmed. But I kept reading, and by halfway through, my voice was strong and clear. I felt empowered and strong and all of those awesome “girl power” words.
And then I kinda, if I do say so myself, kicked ass.
I didn’t have to check my cheat sheet. I hit all my cues the way that I wanted to, and I only screwed up left vs right once. The hour flew by, and before I knew it I had everyone in savasana and was sitting on my mat at the front of the class, hands in prayer at my heart, with more tears threatening to spill over. This time though, tears of joy. Pride. Release. I did it. And I did it well. All I had to do was step out of my head, step out of my own way, stop over-thinking it, and let it happen.
After class, there were only glowing reviews. From my teacher, and from my fellow students. The words “you’re a natural” may have even been tossed around. And it felt so good.
PS: for everyone who has predicted that I’m going to come home totally transformed, a witch doctor, only playing kundalini chants, chimes and instrumentals in my classes….I played The Foo Fighters, Arcade Fire, and a dubstep remix of Ellie Goulding. And we only said “om” once. I’m still me.
I know that I said pretty much this exact same thing in my last post but holy s***!! time is flying by! Today actually marks the halfway point of my ytt, which is welllll over the halfway point of this entire trip too. I’m sad that I only have 15 days left to soak in everything that not only my training here, but also Bali in general, has to offer. On the other hand, I’ve been away from home for a whole month now and am starting to miss the comforts of my own space. My bed. My fridge, stocked with whatever I want. My vitamix! My puppy, who I know is being well taken care of by my amazing family (thanks again guys!). Friends. Family. Internet that doesn’t take me back to the days of dial up with web pages taking a full minute to load sometimes (in case you were wondering why I’m not updating much…..THAT IS WHY).
At this halfway junction, I have sooooo many things that I want to share, but I can’t find the words. They’re not there yet. All the lovely yogis who I know who have done a teacher training told me the same thing – it takes a really long time to process what happens in this month. It’s been this weird wave of things coming up, then fading away. There are things that I’ve let go of that I have been wanting to for a long time. Then others that just keep nagging away in the back of my mind. They’re like an itch that I can’t quite scratch. Some of them are just these vague awarenesses that come to me sometimes in savasana, then disappear again by the time I come back into my body. Others are constant companions. I’m working on just accepting it as it comes.
I’ve also been working diligently on my patience this month. Anyone who knows me well, like beyond the “in public” side of me, knows that this virtue is not one that I was naturally bestowed with. I have whole days where I feel like the universe is playing with me, trying to find where the breaking point is. Extending that breaking point further and further is something I’ve been working on for years, but I knew that this month would push me way past my comfort zone. Being in such an intensive setting, 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, for 30 days? Crazy. And with a whole bunch of women?? Crazier. Sorry ladies, but man can we be annoying sometimes. It’s estrogen overload over here. But I’m really proud of my progress so far!
Speaking of work….I’ve been programming my class! One aspect of our testing is teaching a 60 minute class to the group, and I’m SO EXCITED for mine. So excited that I’m pretty sure that mine is at least 90 minutes long as of right now. And there’s nothing that I want to cut out. And the playlist I’ve been putting together for it? 2 hours and 28 minutes currently. So much for my fear of not knowing what to do. Tonight my villa-mate and I are going to “teach” each other our sequences, then start the inevitable process of trimming it down to size. And for those of you keeping track, that means that my grand total number of hours practicing yoga today will be around 9. Yes, everything hurts. Mostly in a good way.
(Well, actually, today. Less than 9 hours from now.)
I’ll be on a plane to start my journey to Bali.
To say my anxiety level is through the roof might be an understatement. I’m all packed. The fridge is empty. House is clean and ready for my wonderful friend to temporarily move in. I’m as ready as I can possibly be. And I still can’t calm down.
I’ve been pacing around. Picking this up, putting it over there. Wiping the counter one more time. Reorganizing the books in my carry-on. The idea of getting any sleep tonight is long gone.
I had a lovely day today. It’s been a lovely week, really. I visited with family and dear friends. Said my “see you soon”s to loved ones. Almost all of them. There are still things unsaid, unfinished conversations, that I will try desperately not to allow to consume my thoughts (and surely fail at this). I’m trying hard to feel settled and remember that things are exactly the way they should be, the way they need to be, right at this moment.
It’s hard to say goodbye, even if it’s just for a short 6 weeks. Because 6 weeks IS short. This amazing experience will be over before I know it. And I’ll be wondering what I was ever so nervous about.
I’m hoping to update at least once a week while I’m away.
And guys? Leave me comments. Or write me emails. Please? Because it’s not really fair that you’ll get this little peak into what I’m up to and I’ll be left wondering about all of you.