Yoga taught me self esteem. It took years and years of learning to focus on me- not in a selfish way, but in a self-developmentway. I didn’t even realize in the beginning that yoga was teaching me anything in that area. I thought yoga was for physical strength and to become more flexible, but over time it taught me mental strength and flexibility.
I learned things I had never thought of before such as… Breathe.Focus on the now- your breath in and out. Actually, that was really, REALLY hard to do. I was used to go go go and stopping to do anything that was full of thought had not been done in quite a while- ok ever.
I began to realize that my body could be different each day. Inside and out. Different than the day before, or the coming day. I was more flexible some days and could balance better on one side better than the other.
I worked out consistently, then slowly over time I became stronger in different ways. I liked that is wasn’t as hard to lift the 50-pound bag at work, I loved that I could manage my pain from arthritis better and I even started to stand up for myself. I learned to say no to things I didn’t really want to do. I figured out I had always said no to something- but not the things I wanted. If I was saying yes to something I didn’t really want to do, I ultimately was saying no to something more important that I pushed away in order to do this other thing.
After years I became toned. My muscles and my inner body. My yoga teacher would say we are now running like a well-oiledmachine fearlessly and fiercely.
After 5 years I started to take more control of my life and my family life. In some ways my husband Jay liked it and in some ways, he didn’t because I would stand up to him. It was at this point that I finally dared tell him that the way our marriage was going didn’t feel right. This started the discussions that we needed to make some changes. Well, you now that ultimately ended up- he didn’t want to change. Then I had a major change in my life where I was now a widow, but luckily I had learned some self-esteem and self-respect to help me in this new journey. I still love yoga and it still makes me challenge myself. That’s the way I like it now.