I'm a pretty private and shy person. The thought of people asking about my life is a bit overwhelming so I try to avoid those situations. Sure, I write on this very not-so-private blog, but I choose what I put on here. I've always been very particular at who and how I share my personal life with and the more recent years, I was even more protective of myself.
When I first came out of the teacher training closet, I was so nervous when anyone would ask me about it. I would look at them doe-eyed, as if they had just asked me for one of my kidneys. I wasn't surprised when I was shaky telling the studio director. I expected to sweat buckets when I told my boss about taking a leave of absence. But what I didn't put into account was how it would be with the rest of the world. Well, my circle of peeps anyways. I had forgotten that people might just be curious, too.
One day after class, someone asked me if I was going to teacher training. My answer? Someday. I didn't say much about it and would use code words to talk to fellow future trainees about our plans, etc.
Something didn't feel quite right.
Then the other day, one of my instructors said something to me while I was in the middle of Standing Head to Knee.
'Don't be so insecure.'
Suddenly there was tightness in my throat and I found myself fighting back the tears. I was surprised at my reaction. Why did his words have that impact? Wasn't this something I've heard before and brushed off? It's not like his words were new or foreign. Another teacher have commented on it before too.
But he was right. I just wasn't expecting for the truth to come out while I trying to balance on one leg.
Since then, I've been thinking a whole lot about my honest feelings about teacher training, my practice, my work, who I am as a person.
Why was I so nervous and shy about teacher training? Why did I sound like a scared mouse when asked to recite dialogue on the spot? Why was I so hesitant to openly tell anyone who asks that I am going to teacher training? Was I really so terribly insecure?
These questions were in my head, buzzing about like bees. I had to take a few days off from the practice because of a heavy workload, so I took that time to really think about all this.
A few answers came up. They've been in the back of my mind for awhile, but never really giving them much of a thought. I was afraid. I was afraid that my body wouldn't be good enough for training so I was being hard on myself and practicing as much as I can. I figured that if I can do postures well, with perfect dialogue, then surely I earned the right to go to teacher training.
I was afraid that I wasn't good enough so I prepared and prepared and prepared - as if being prepared would make up for whatever else I was missing.
The truth is, there was nothing missing. Nothing except confidence in myself.
He was right. My other teacher was right. I had been blowing smoke in my own mirrors so that I didn't have to look what was really happening.
Now, it's all out in the open. I've been found out and I had no choice but to come clean to myself, while trying to balance on one leg. I had to be honest.
'The mirror is there for corrections, not judgments'
So since that night, I have become more open about teacher training - excitement and fears and all. I finally felt unstuck studying dialogue - I couldn't move past one posture for months (I wonder why!). I let go of the grip on my own expectations in my practice. I told anyone who asked if I was going that yes, I am going to teacher training in Fall. I got great advice from new teachers whose training experience is still raw and the excitement still bubbled within them. I spent a fun weekend talking about yoga, practicing dialogue drunk, and generally having fun with people who loved the yoga as much as I do. No one was asking for my kidneys. And I didn't have to tell them I had two, either.
I can still be private but I don't have to be afraid. Best of all, I learned to forgive myself and let go of any expectations inside and outside the hot room. I'm still prepared, but this time it includes preparing to fall then get right back up and to have fun while doing it. Damn it, that dialogue was right. I can't always balance on one leg but now, I can always laugh and look at my smiling happy face in the mirror when I fall.
And what do you know, it makes a world of a difference!
Namaste, peeps. Namaste.