Going deeper (not really)

You know, I am seriously just processing my trip. Processing takes what ever time it takes, and it comes out however it does…meaning I’m not sure there will be a post. Or maybe there will be. I just don’t know when the right words will come; I’ve invited them…I guess we’ll see.

But there are a couple specific things I’d like to write about so I’ll start with those.

This will be the yoga part,  because I made it a priority to find and take as many yoga classes as I was able to. This is not to say that I don’t have a personal practice…or maybe it is. My personal practice is half-hearted; I love being in a class with others, their energy pushes me and, while I don’t compare myself to others, I do like to catch the tailwinds that a class generates, and allow that energy to help me flow.

The first class I took was in a cool studio in Chaska, MN on Saturday the 27th. It had several classes a day, a cool room and a hot room, and a few different levels. It was also pretty “fitness” oriented. I took an advanced class and there was no sanskrit, no real instructions. I got the feeling that maybe this is the same practice these people do every time? I don’t know. It wasn’t a bad class, but certainly not a class that made me want to go back. And the mats they rented? UGH! The class was pretty warm, about 85-90 degrees and I was slipping and sliding. I didn’t feel safe so I held back on a lot  of poses. Like I said, not bad, but not for me.

The next class I took was Monday the 29th, after I moved from the hotel in Shakopee (naming the towns is for my memory and for any of you geography geeks out there) to Victoria where I stayed with my Brother-in-law and his wife, parents of the groom. I drove just a few minutes away to a very cool little town called Excelsior, right on Lake Minnetonka. This place looked promising; they called it a healing arts center, offered massage and auyervedic info as well as yoga. When I came in I could see the class before me finishing up. A beginner’s class and a packed room. They didn’t rent mats, they loaned them out free (LOVE that!) and they were all nice, safe mats. The class I took was intermediate level and only 4 other people showed up, which is how it works there. It was a really nice class tho, a great studio with open windows on a beautiful day, a lovely teacher who spoke about yoga (though still no sanskrit names for poses) and even had us doing some kundalini breath of fire  and chanting at the end. I had thought maybe it was a regional thing to not use sanskrit, but here we were chanting. I asked her about it afterwards and she said of the 5 people in class she only knew 1 and just thought she’d stay easy. I liked her a lot.  After class I walked down the street for tea and a GF muffin, sat by the lake and just enjoyed the day for an hour or so. I went back to the same class on Wednesday, this time there was only 2 of us in class, but the beginner class was, again, packed. I loved it,  it was almost like a private, and she worked with us like that. I highly recommend this place for classes. I left on Thursday morning and was disappointed because there was a Thursday night Yin class I would have loved to have taken…but the lake house called!

On Thursday I got up really early so I could make it to St.Cloud, heading toward  the lake, for an 8 am class with Karin . Karin runs Return Yoga in St. Cloud (all info and blog online). She also used to write a recovery blog called Whiskey and Porn For Everyone, and that’s how I “met” her several years ago. That blog is still up too, though she doesn’t write there anymore. She writes  so beautifully and a good recovery blog never goes out of date. I found her blog right when I had already quit drinking but was struggling hard with the whole HP concept. Her blog helped me, a lot. HIGHLY RECOMMEND!

Anyway, in the old blog she writes about doing her teacher training and here she is 3 years later owning a studio, running trainings…she’s the real deal. I have read and admired and talked with her via twitter and instagram for years, and I finally got to meet her and take a class, it was awesome! Her class was focused, her students devoted, her vibe just perfect, the space absolutely wonderful. Meeting any of you, my “imaginary friends” as I tend to call you (and you know I know you are all SO real), is always such a treat, and this was a huge one for me.

(At the end look for a link to her blog and an online class she is going to give)

After spending a little time chatting with Karin I headed for Nisswa, right outside of Brainerd where I was going to stay until Monday at the lake.  Friday morning I got up with one of my nieces went to a class at another healing arts center. This was a GREAT class. He described it as yin, but it was no yin I knew, although what he was working and accomplishing with us was definitely yin.  There was floor work, and long held poses, but there was a lot of long held dynamic movement though, repetitious. A different way to go deep, through movement. He never used any of the Yin names for poses I knew, but it was moot as these were mostly all new to me. I loved it, and learned a lot, most importantly, and once again, that every teacher is different, every class is different, and there are a myriad of ways to do a pose. I appreciate that so much in my practice, and in any practice I might teach…modifications are necessary and new ideas are (or can be) awesome. First do no harm, right? And he spoke my language….breathe, return to the breathe, focus on the breathe, the breathe is the practice, allow the breathe to bring you deeper….lovely.

He was closed during the weekend of the 4th, but when I left Monday I stopped and took another class from him. So good, my body peeled open both times.

(I may as well add in my meeting info here, which was a little disappointing to me. I like visiting other meetings when I travel, they are all so different. I only hit one meeting on my 12 day trip, but it was a lovely BB study and I was glad I made it. I was with my sober brother-in-law both weekends, and I had dinner on Monday night with an old friend of mine and Tom’s in Minneapolis, who has over 30 years sobriety. I also, as always, kept up texts with my sober posse.  But I was busy, and happy. It was all good, never a moment when I felt like a drink was a remotely good idea. )

Since I’ve been home I am right back on my own yoga schedule and it feels so good. I took a class wednesday, two yesterday and I just got out of class today. I need to call my guinea pig  friend today and let him now I am back and ready to work with him again (wait, did I ever say I am working with someone? I am, it’s been great, I am learning a lot and he seems to like it!).

I just re-read this fact filled post, dry, a list. Oh well. Maybe it’s like a yin practice, breaking down the resistance to going deeper and allowing that to happen. Anything is possible!

 

Here is the link to Karin’s website, blog and self-care course. It looks good; I’m in!

http://www.returnyoga.org/2015/07/06/the-art-of-self-care-online-course/

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15 Comments

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  1. I keep trying to post on the road. If you get more than 1 sorry!

    If you need a partner let me know, I loved Karins blog. Love.

    I need to write about my own vaaction yoga!

  2. this was a really interesting post – both for the careful retelling of your various yoga experiences and for the opportunity it gave me to yell really loudly (only on here, obv) – I LOVE WHISKEY AND PORN!!!!!!! I read her old blog many months ago and had mislaid her, so incredibly glad to remeet her here. and you took a class with her! have been looking at the online course. wondering if it would be right for me as an introduction to yoga…. I am having a bad case of initiativitis right now…. maybe it would, maybe not…. and I see Anne is interested in doing it which is great!

    • I would do it with you! I am very interested in the course.

      • Having thought a bit more about it I don’t think this is for me – this time around, anyway! It sounds marvellous but I need to be realistic about what I have capacity to commit to… Look forward to hearing about it if any of you folks manage to get to do it! Xx

    • I think this would be a beautiful introduction to yoga.
      Not as exercise. And a way of life.
      It is so amazing.

    • Ah, Whiskey and Porn…i still go back and re-read things from that blog, she is such a beautiful writer. It was awesome to meet her, she has really helped me in terms of both my AA program and my yoga. I think the course is going to be awesome, but I get why committing is hard. I think the best introduction to yoga is taking classes, finding a good studio that resonates with you….better use of your time at this point, in my opinion (which means very little! LOL).

  3. You did great remembering the old Indian names of the cities. Bloomington is where I grew up! The small suburb with the Mall of America & the international airport. I lived on Lake Minnetonka for a while, my brother still lives west of Chaska. I will be there next week! (I live 3 hours away now.) I can imagine the processing your trip must be taking and I see why you have divided it into parts. What an overwhelming amount of emotions. It’s hard to imagine that this was all the same trip. The online course sounds amazing. Especially since I am a yoga beginner. Lori

    • Hi Lori…

      my husband grew up in Bloomington too..have ben there a few times, and certainly hit the mall! I’m so glad I named the towns now…it’s always nice to get connection, on any level! When at your brothers i would recommend driving into excelsior….spirit of the lakes yoga was the name i think. It was pretty awesome!

      • I was a 1981 grad from Jefferson. You got me motivated! I found a 12 step & yoga meeting in one! It is close to where I am staying with my mom in Richfield. I have never been to a step meeting or a yoga class so I’m going to try this at Yoga Sanctuary. How brave of me! Definately going to check out the Excesior one too. Thanks!

      • Awesome! That’s great.
        Way to kill 2 birds…LOL!
        It will be different from both a regular AA meeting and a regular yoga class, but fun and I can’t wait to hear about it.
        (Ive been to richfield too!) He graduated from whatever the catholic school was that was there..or wait, he went to catholic elementary and then went away to high school, actually. But def grew up in bloomington

      • Holy Angels most likely. The center in Excelsior has a soothing oil massage. I have never had a massage so this may be on the list too!

      • nowI am jealous of your trip! I’m still trying to write my overall post because the trip was huge in many ways, but it was also good…so i may be back, ya never know!

  4. Waaaaa!!! I miss yoga (insert whiny, pouty face here)
    I’ve been traveling and maintaining a schedule that barely allows for food and bathroom breaks. Not good!
    I loved hearing about all of your yoga classes and am totally with you on the personal practice piece. I’m only half-hearted when in front of a video – I’m all in during class.
    You have motivated me again. I WILL find a way to work it in. I’ve gotten to where I need it.
    (looking forward to hearing more about your trip!)

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