Working through this week’s “homework assignment” for yoga therapeutics was revealing. It was five questions. Just five questions. But damn. The answers to these five questions — seeing them on paper, reading them back to myself — they connect a few giant life dots. Namely: what’s holding me back from one of my life goals, referred to in this Q&A as a life “dream.”
1. What stops you from going deeper into yoga practice?
I try not to let anything stop me from going deeper. I may not be doing asana or pranayama all day, or holed up in my room reading books about yoga – but in everyday life (work, family, friends, etc.), I am mindful of applying yoga. I’ve been especially conscious of it since starting the teacher training program. When I fail, it’s usually the result of my ego and emotions.
2a. How do you stop yourself from being closer to others?
I will put up a wall between myself and other people when I feel as though I will be judged, or don’t want to make myself vulnerable in way that will lead to hurt, i.e. risking the heart, the ego. I often revert to humor or sarcasm when I want to create a barrier — people don’t realize it’s that, and sometimes I don’t either.
2b. How do you isolate yourself?
I stay home and write. I eat by myself at work and at home. I go on vacations by myself. I tend to do a lot of things by myself, and am comfortable with it.
3. What’s the biggest fear you are facing that cripples you; that stops you from living your dream? What is your dream?
My biggest fear and dream are intertwined. One of my biggest dreams is to fall in love again, find a spiritual partner and have children of our own. My biggest fear is not being able to accomplish that in this life.
Side note: Re-reading at my response to answer 2a and 2b, I see an inherent challenge to achieving this dream, and negating this “fear.” I want communion with another, but embrace my independence and solitude. Hmmm. Is it possible to truly have both?
4. Who didn’t bless you? (Could be someone alive or gone… what you wanted to hear; what you wanted to receive or possibly have give; what do/did you need to hear from them; what do/did you need to say to them)
I am unsure how to answer this. I’ve felt love and encouragement from all of the people who are important to me – my parents, siblings, close friends. I’ve had my heart crushed several times as a result of failed relationships, but in hindsight those fizzled with good reason, as emotionally draining as they were at the time. I am glad that those ex’s didn’t “bless” me; I wouldn’t be the strong, independent woman I am today.
Update: Almost immediately after submitting these answers to Gabriel, he emailed me back. He provided a thoughtful response to each and every answer I provided. The care that this demonstrated made me cry. It was not expected. But it was so appreciated. My favorite line: “Be the right person instead of trying to find the right person and all will fall into place.”