For so long, I wished for my work to look different. I wanted to be the teacher who wasn’t sweat-covered and wearing athletic-wear. I longed for my work to be delicate and gauzy and dressed in white. And so I kept my work up and sought those teachers out and traveled again and again to New York City to study with them and take in what they were doing. The elegance and the feminine beauty in their work painting a stark contrast to the power yoga classes I teach in studios with floors so covered in sweat that they must be mopped in between classes.
But my work only looks different because we cannot all hear the same way. Sometimes our synapses do not communicate with the correct neuron. Sometimes it takes the repetition of chaturanga after chaturanga to allow a softening. It is in that moment, fatigued and relieved of fight and flight that some of us can hear those mantras.
The strength of two connected neural pathways is enough to form the muscle memory of a sun salutation and the weakness of two disconnected neural pathways will cause me to forget your name.
If asana is the prayer then I can’t speak it into being. I must flex, twist, engage, rotate, and arc it into existence. From those created shapes I can create a future. From that seat I can hear.
So I don’t long to be someone else anymore. I don’t wish for my work to look like anyone else’s. I only pray to keep knowing my work.