Here are some things I’d like you to know…
Your presence in my class means everything to me, because i know how hard it can be to get out of bed.
I know the risk you take in getting into your car to come here.
I know how testing it can be, to sweat and breathe in such close proximity to people who are different than you. You are a brave example of the Universe only knowing how to move in one direction...forward.
These last 1,000 yoga classes have stretched, tested and expanded me in ways only silence, a wink and maybe a slight nod in your direction could explain.
None of it is perfect and I’ve stumbled through seasons of wondering if it’s even worth it, if my efforts have been futile, if it’s time to roll up my mat and move on. Though I am grateful not to be in such a season today, 1,000 classes rendered feels like a great time for me to re-articulate my love for you, re-dedicate myself to this craft, and reclaim promises I never made but should have…
I re-commit to my role as a Yoga Teacher and facilitator; a “professional friend” who exercises safety and practicality before creativity. I promise to sequence intelligently and stay open to change.
I will hold fast to the truth that Yoga was invented by people of a different skin color, life experience and view of the world than me. This ancient and sacred practice was never intended to be presented in physical form, shown off for the internet or profited from for personal gain. There will always be a dark side to the ways in which we put food on our table, but I will honor this practice for what it is and where it came from to the best of my ability.
Further, I will be mindful of cultural appropriation and continue t be a student and advocate of diversity on and off my mat and ESPECIALLY in my classroom.
I will see myself in you, especially when I feel annoyed, frustrated or angry. I will be patient and kind and promptly make amends if I demonstrate anything on the contrary.
Lastly, I will love you. I will love you as I love myself, as I am loved by God.
Each time I step into the yoga room, I have a new opportunity to create a habitat for acceptance and a terrain for taking healthy risks. I know what I have, and I am grateful and damn proud.
Andrea Gibson wrote,
“...i intend to leave this place so shattered, there will have to be a thousand heavens for all my flying parts”.
Every yoga class I teach is one of those heavens—
YOU, are one of a thousand heavens for my flying parts.
Friend, no matter what, remember that I want to be here. I want to teach you yoga. I want to do this work; for this work is simply my love, made visible.
May grace and peace be with you and me and everyone else for the next thousand classes!