Open to It All

palm trees santa monica

For most of my life, I’ve tried to hold on to whatever kind of control I could, in hopes that I could change outcomes, change how the story ended in a more favorable way.

When my mother died of ovarian cancer last year, I learned how little control we have.

palm trees santa monicaThat I maybe no longer wanted to know how the story ended, because I’d experienced a bad ending. (I can fully admit that I led a pretty fucking charmed life up until then, other than some job shit and mild mental health issues…so of course this loss devastated me. I had never experienced something so devastating that couldn’t be changed.)

Even throughout the worst of my grief, I wanted to know how my story ended. Did I recover? HOW? Would I ever be happy again? 

When I decided to give LA a try, even a month ago, I wanted to know how this, too, would end. Would I stay? Would I be happy? Was I making the right decision?

And then I signed up for yoga teacher training. It may seem like sort of a whim on the outside, but I’ve been thinking about it since 2013. Also, earlier this summer when I was still struggling pretty fiercely, my psychiatrist and I talked about an intensive outpatient program out here. Instead, I just booked a trip out here the next week, and it was a much-needed band-aid at that moment in time. We revisited the idea of IOP a few weeks later and decided that the focus of these programs wasn’t quite what I needed right now. “I don’t know,” she said, “I think you just need some kind of really intense soul searching more than a clinical program.” And she and my therapist both agreed I needed more structure in my life.

My therapist also strongly suggested I needed more yoga in my life…and I started putting all these pieces together: what if, beyond just more yoga, I did a yoga teacher training? 2/2 mental health professionals agreed it would be a great idea and also reminded me that it, too, would bring up more emotions in its own way, but that ultimately it sounded like a good idea.

On the registration form, they asked if we were taking the training to deepen our own practices or if we planned on teaching.

I wish there had been a “not sure” box, because I’m not. The idea of teaching in front of a class nauseates me right now (I am somewhat more shy than you’d expect), but that might change throughout the course of the training. Either way, I know that the experience will change me, and that I do want to find a way to bring the healing power of yoga (/fitness in general) to others. (I’m still taking on run coaching clients, too, if you’ve been thinking about it!)

I don’t know if I’ll stay in LA.

I don’t know if I’ll end up teaching yoga in a traditional sense.

But I know I’m open to all of this and experiencing it for all it’s worth. (“Do all the healing shit in LA, Theodora,” was actual clinical advice I received and I AM HERE FOR IT. SOMEONE POINT ME TO MORE CRYSTALS.)

P.S. I find it no coincidence that it’s been fairly cloudy and foggy in LA this week and the sun just came out. HI MOM.

What are you trying to be more open to right now?

2 comments on “Open to It All

  1. Kayla

    I think whether or not you decide to teach in the end (and that’s something you don’t even need to decide while you’re in TT) it will still be a worthwhile experience. I’m so excited to hear about your perspective on teacher training.

  2. katie

    I taught yoga sculpt for 2 years in a small town, I wasn’t the best teacher ever, but I had a few dedicated students and it was just 3 mornings a week and one night a week, plus one weekend a month. I worked a regular job as well. You may find that sort of situation, or run a 6 week session somewhere sometime. But teacher training seems like a great idea! Good work!


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