Happy New Year friends!
And so it begins again. A new year. A new promise. A new resolution.
Last year, I resolved to write a blog post once a week. I was doing well for a few months but eventually that goal became surprisingly unmanageable. So much of my life changed last year as result of both choice and serendipity. My husband lost his job about a year ago at this time. I voluntarily left my comfortable job in September to pursue my dream of becoming self‑employed. If you described to me my current life at this time last year, I would have labeled you certifiably mad. Yet life has a beautiful way of unfolding itself at precisely the right time. What was once a seemingly unimaginable road became the only viable option in the end.
As I started blogging more seriously in early 2011 about my travels, about culture, and about my home – New York City, and more specifically, the borough of Queens – I discovered joy in the act of writing and in the act of sharing what I knew with others. After a few weeks, I was getting recognition for my work. In July, I attended my very first conference for travelers and bloggers in Vancouver. People at the conference encouraged me to do more. The seed that I once planted years ago about self-employment began to flourish and grow.
When I hopped on that plane to Los Angeles in September, I had no idea what 9 weeks of full-time Bikram yoga teacher certification would be like. All I knew was the conviction I felt in my heart that I was doing the right thing even if it was unconventional. Those 9 weeks challenged me physically, mentally, and emotionally. All of my strengths and weaknesses were made bare for me to face with no place to hide. As trainees, we were encouraged to “trust the process” even though our hearts screamed out, “F*$K the process!!!” Breakdowns happened gradually as did the breakthroughs. By November, I came out a changed person, shedding layers of myself that no longer served me.
In Bikram yoga, the first of the 26 postures is half moon pose where students bend to the right or left creating a crescent shape with their bodies. As a teacher, my job is to remind my students of proper alignment as they hold the posture. In half moon pose, I instruct them to adjust their shoulders so they can “open up their chest like a flower petal blooming.” This tiny adjustment leads to a gradual opening of the upper body where the chest lifts up exposing the heart, the piece of ourselves we shield and protect the most.
Life is like that flower petal blooming. Change happens so incrementally that often we don’t notice it has happened. Only when we look back and see the distance traversed do we marvel at its occurrence. So here’s to the accomplishments, the failures, the struggles, and the discoveries of 2011. Together, they form the stepping stones to the unwritten events of 2012. Wherever life leads me this year, I am going to trust the process.
Without judgment and without attachment, I accept that I did not achieve my blogging goal for 2011. Yet once again, I have set a goal that I will write more and blog regularly.
“Never too late, never too old, never too bad, and never too sick, to start from the scratch once again.” ~ Bikram Choudhury