Well, I’m just sitting here licking my lips after consuming this insane salad from Angela over at Oh She Glows. Vegan, gluten-free, nut-free, soy-free goodness…. with all my favorite spring goodies: asparagus, leeks, strawberries? Yes please. She’s a genius over there on Oh She Glows, I tell you.
So, it’s been a busy few days for me over here in Vitadventure-land. It’s been back to work. And I have to say, I’m pleasantly surprised. It hasn’t been nearly as overwhelming or stressful as I had anticipated. In fact, I’d go so far as to say I’ve been ENJOYING being back. It’s been confirmation that I do love my work. It gives me pleasure and purpose, as well as stress and heartache. But I’ll take it- for now.
Yesterday, we had our last Monday evening YTT class. It was titled, “Dharma Sharing” on the syllabus. Dharma, in the Hindu world, is basically the moral foundation of life. If you GTS that (that means “Google That Shit”, Mom, in case you’re wondering), you’ll get an array of the following descriptions
natural universal laws whose observance enables humans to be contented and happy
the moral law combined with spiritual discipline that guides one’s life.
“that which holds” the people of this world and the whole creation.
an individual’s duty fulfilled by observance of custom or law.
Basically, if you’ve ever been to a yoga class and the teacher gives a nice little inspirational talk at the beginning, that’s their “Dharma Talk”.
So I envisioned that “Dharma Sharing” would be a lecture on accessing your true nature, what moves you, what you love and how you share that with your students. Sounds reasonable, right? How to share your inspiration?
Nope, my friends. It was another “Sit Around in a Circle and Share Your Feelings” session. What? We JUST HAD THIS last week?
Our teacher told us to each simply share, for 3-5 minutes, whatever words or emotions presented themselves to us. And our only job was to listen.
I won’t lie. I thought, “Listen? I have been doing this for 8 HOURS TODAY!!! I don’t want to listen to anyone else!!!”
Ah, the life of a therapist. Sometimes, we just have to stop LISTENING to preserve our own sanity.
But alas, I took a deep breath and tested my patience. I listened. For 2.5 hours.
For 2.5 hours, people cried. People laughed. People took a lot longer than 5 minutes each. People overshared. People talked about their early childhood trauma, their relationship issues, their depression, their lack of self-confidence, their love of one another, their abandonment issues, their rejection from their father. I considered giving out my business card. I could have made a KILLING.
But I get the program’s point. They want us to be aware of our own shit before we start helping other’s on their spiritual journey. That makes sense. We need to be comfortable sharing our emotions and thoughts with our students. But, it was all a little too “kumbaya” for me. Everyone else went out afterwards for smoothies and tea, and all I wanted to do was go home, watch some E! and hang out with my husband and my dog.
Which makes me feel guilty, in a way. I wonder if I picked the wrong YTT program. I’m not all “kumbaya” and I never really connected with any of my fellow students. I keep thinking, “Did I miss the boat here? Am I missing something? Why does everyone love this program except for me?”
And then I realize that I am truly living my own yoga in my own way- and sharing that in my own way. I didn’t need a YTT program to prove this to me, or to become BFF with a bunch of yoga teacher trainees to become “enlightened” or access my dharma. And that’s not to discount the friendships that my fellow trainees have made with each other.
It’s just that, for me, I already have love and meaning in my life, through my marriage and through my family and friends. I chose a career that makes me an agent for meaningful change in people’s life. And being back at work this week is the reminder that I’m already living my dharma. I’m happy. I’m content. I’m creating meaningful change and helping people to heal in a small way. My way.
And that, my friends, is all I can ask for. Well, that and red wine and chocolate.