Yoga is not about being bendy. It is about showing up to your mat consistently not knowing what is going to happen and being ok with that. It’s about uncovering who you really are and about being kind to yourself so that you can then be kind to others. It’s about slowing down to get strong; breathing and moving and smiling on the inside.
Yesterday marked week 33 of my pregnancy. Its an overwhelming feeling to think about how close I am to meeting our little Casey!! Lately, I feel my energy ebbing a bit just like everyone said it would. I still have so much I want to get done, however, so I find myself thankful to have these days off work to move at my own pace and take my time in getting all the projects on my list completed. I’m thankful that my creative juices are still flowing though. Everyone talks about the “nesting” instinct kicking in and I definitely feel the need to get everything spick and span before Casey gets here, however, more than that I feel the need to delve into creative projects to make our home as pretty and comfortable as I can make it.
Throughout my pregnancy, I have kept up a (fairly) consistent yoga practice. This has helped me not only with the aches and pains of my growing body but also to find peace in every day and keep my creative energy flowing. I’ve heard it said many times that the key to yoga is just to show up to your mat. For the first time in my life, I’ve finally found the wisdom in this. I’ve followed the same prenatal yoga practice, led by Lara Dutta, for my entire pregnancy. I find the consistency of sticking with the same routine has helped me want to “show up,” plus it is a routine I really enjoy and have found helpful in working the muscles and parts of my body that need to be worked. In the past, when I’ve done yoga, I find myself approaching it as a “work-out” rather than as a spiritual practice. This has changed during my pregnancy. Even though I’m following the same routine, it is different each day. For the first time in my life I am learning to be present with where I am each time I go through my routine. Some days, I feel totally energized and able to really get into the flow. Other days my mind wanders a lot and the routine is more mechanical but this is ok. Each time I do my yoga I learn something new: about myself, about my body, my capabilities. I finally understand what others have said about yoga for years: just to be with where you are that day is enough. In getting rid of expectations and “should’s,” I am able to be truly relax, breath, observe and let go. I am finding strength, wisdom and trust in my body through my prenatal yoga practice where I never found it before. The changes in my pregnant body are celebrated and sustained and I feel so blessed to be able to truly find love and compassion for myself during this time. Furthermore, I feel grateful that I was able to have this experience because the wisdom and ability to “stay in the now” is going to help me so much as a new parent.
I hope that someone else my read these words and find the same solace in yoga during their pregnancy as I have in mine. And a big Thank You to one of my dear friends who, when I first told her I was pregnant, gave me these words of wisdom: “Drink water, eat organic, do yoga :)”