Fall 2012 Newsletter
Ben tornati Amici! * Welcome back! * Bentornato l’autunno!
“If we fall, we don’t need self-recrimination or blame or anger – we need a reawakening of our intention and a willingness to re-commit, to be whole-hearted once again.” – Sharon Salzberg
I really connected to the reading above in this season of home coming, change, new beginnings, rejuvenation, growth! Trying to find roots among the volatility or learning to ride the waves/winds. We can use this time to come back to something fulfilling – back to schools, our practices, mats, meditation, ourselves.
For me it’s also back to newsletter, back to doing more thai sessions, workshops, privates and generally teaching more fully (back in Andover, B Yoga Center). It has been particularly special to continue practice together in Andover. It’s been deeply touching to see the community ties continue outside the Kismet walls reuniting at UnionStudio and HOMe Yoga.
In my last email I discussed how greatly I value how this practice teaches us we can overcome great challenges. My whole venture into teaching and personal growth has been a process of facing fears and uncomfortable situations.
My teachers are these opportunities for growth. Recently, I was able to really challenge my comfort zone teaching at the Greater Salt Lake City Yoga Festival, and most recently teaching at the lululemon AmBADASSador Night Out on the Rose Kennedy Greenway last week. These were both events I felt I should do, however, the thoughts of them were anxiety-ridden. My inner voice categorized these as steps for growth, even though it would have been initially easier on my nerves to not do them and saved me much anxiety. However, the benefits of these experiences have both greatly outweighed the initial tension. I was able to learn a lot about myself – mainly that I wouldn’t completely mess-up, suck and die as a result. In the end, these “painful” experiences are bringing me closer to peace.
“’People’s beliefs about their abilities have a profound effect on those abilities….Ability is not a fixed property…there is huge variability in it; people who have a sense of self-efficacy bounce back from failures; they approach things in terms of how to handle them rather than worrying about what can go wrong.’ Albert Bandura…..If ability is not a pre-ordained, limited, commodity, then our potential to grow, to understand, to love, to connect is significantly nourished by what we believe about ourselves.” Sharon Salzberg from The Force of Kindness
I am also deeply fortunate to have you all – a supportive community of students, friends, family and a practice that push me out of my comfort zone, and be more than I thought I could be. I’ve learned from working with great friends and coaches like Sho and Hilary who helped me more formally identify weaknesses in my beliefs and some tools to help me navigate these thoughts and feelings. And working with Joanna Benevides for lulu was a gift! People’s beliefs in me that they share are much more encouraging than my own. I’ve been lucky to have many of these supportive teachers and voices embedded in me and slowly becoming more second nature.
This encouragement and support has given me the strength to follow my intuition. While I’m grateful for a growing ability to tap into intuition, I’m not often comfortable with outcome. The “right path” is often the initially bumpier one. And lessons are learned by both following and not following the inner voice.
While I easily forget, experience teaches me I can be more, especially in service of others:
I need to think more of myself
I can be more than I think I am
I can do more than I think I can
You think more of me than I do
I think more of you than you do
We need to think more of ourselves
Assume and trust our potential
I am so grateful for the trip to Salt Lake City. I had such an amazing weekend at the festival and all around Salt Lake with friends new and old. I was greatly inspired by the nature (beauty and majesty of mountains and canyons) and the people. I was honored help Santosh Maknikar with his festival and mission to make yoga accessible to all people (i.e., yogaforpeople.org). He also inspired and gathered such a great group of people. The students were so warm, welcoming, supportive and fun! I was fully inspired by the example and lives of my fellow teachers – living examples of the endless opportunities for growth that inspired living affords. I was once again reminded about how special we all are and how unique and similar our experiences are on this path of yoga and life.
“People are capable, at any time in their lives of doing what they dream of.” – Paolo Coehlo
National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month
September is now over, however, just wanted to acknowledge that it marked National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Obviously this means a lot to me given my niece Alicia, and my baby sister that is also a childhood cancer survivor!!!! In honor of that, and a cousin’s recent diagnosis of Leukemia at hospitalization at MGH, I’ve returned to a regular schedule of platelet donations – a practice I started years ago when my sister was treated at Children’s and needed platelets. Anything you can do helps!
I’m very happy to report that Alicia has been acting her age! Despite lacking good night’s sleep, she is talking and playing more and more physically active. She is scheduled to have the halo of screws around her head, posts and vest removed this month – can’t believe she’s been in that 24/7 for the last 4 months. Once that comes off, she’ll have her next scan and continue with a neck brace. I can’t say thank you enough from my sister, my family and my heart for all the continuous intentions, prayers, well-wishes, gifts and support for Alicia.
ai Genitori – per support del figlio absentee!
Grazie mille ai miei genitori!! Deep, heartfelt gratitude for my parent’s, for their continued support of their son as he follows a path, both they and I don’t fully understand.
And for fun, some of my Favorites (i miei favoriti) from the Summer:
* Kouign Amann pastry from Les Madeleines in Salt Lake City – locally Flour Bakery’s Butter Breton Cake is not as melty in the middle as Les Madeleines’ version, but still meets my cravings all too well
* West Bridge in Cambridge – soo delicious, excellent service and drinks, and eggs in a jar!
* Sharon Jones in Christopher Columbus Park – for free!
* Super fun, challenging and groovy Warrior Power w/ Marc MacDonald @ omwarrior.com
* More Salt Lake City: Library, Hiking, Mountains, Krishna Temple in Spanish Fork
* Teaching early morning yoga on a dock in Marblehead Neck
* Roofdeck Yoga and Dining– alone and with friends
* Goat Milk Greek Frozen Yogurt
* Wanderlust Yoga Festival in Vermont (Alison West, Cindi Lee, Ani Difranco, Elena Brower and always Natasha Rizopoulos)
* Kumare – very interesting, entertaining, inspiring and disturbing documentary
* Bhangra Yoga – super fun, joyful ecstatic and challenging, described by creator and teacher Atma as kundalini on steroids
* Hubway expansion to Cambridge and Somerville – now biking to Life Alive just got easier!!
As it’s harvest season, I wish you many fruitful returns to your mats, your breaths and your Selves!!
Pace e amore,