I recently injured myself in an incident that was obviously a battle between my ego and pure stupidity. Of course the moment I realized I was hurt I thought “when will I be able to have a ‘normal practice’ again?!”
I was terrified. Would I have to take a short break? Take a step back? It sounds dramatic but I think I went through the stages of grief within a 2 day period. At first I was in denial, “it’s not that bad” followed by anger and isolation “how could I have let this happen,” to bargaining with the customer service lady at Vitamin Shoppe about treatments. Somewhere between refilling ice packs and feeling comforted by my supportive homemade sling (thanks to my boyfriend’s t-shirt), I realized this moment, this injury IS my practice. Instead of fearing how this would change my time on the mat I needed to see how it could enhance it. I had to stop viewing it as a step back and move forward. I could take my practice to new places thanks to this injury – I can learn more about meditation, dive into the sutras and broaden my practice. And what is a “normal practice”?
Perhaps this injury was a reminder that it’s not all about the physical. Everyday our practice is different and that’s what makes yoga so relatable and exciting. Some days we’re stiff & tight other days we feel like we could do anything. Today we can focus and tomorrow we’re all over the place. It’s like so many other things in our lives, our jobs, our relationships, our mood. It’s always changing and in my mind that’s the most amazing part. Accepting what is and moving forward is a hard pill to swallow but I’ll take it.
And that’s where I am, I am physically hurt but feeling stronger than ever. This injury was a much needed dose of reality. I feel humbled, happy and ready to heal.