Jumping on the Yoga Mat…
Well well. I guess we’re all, at some point, struggling to find what defines us, what sticks to our personality, our inner disposition, our inner truth. For you to get the whole sense of my journey, I might want to start from the very beginning. My first class. I was about eighteen years old, a young man full of failures when it came to sport – as I did not enjoy it at all and had probably done like a thousand trials of various activities (which actually led to my disinterest or my getting bored…). But I had to be active, to do something else than eating and putting on weight, actually feeling unhealthy and listening to my parents rebuking me for not doing a thing. I knew my mother had done yoga before, and she advised me to take a trial class. She also told me it would be quite expensive and I could not practice that much if they were to pay. Deal. The week after, on a Friday night, I went to Yoga Moves Nyon, a studio I found on the internet that was giving “Warm Yoga Classes”…which obviously sparked my interest. With an open mind and an empty stomach, I attended my first yoga class ever. Heavy drops were pouring outside, the winter was wrapping us with its gloomy atmosphere, but back there, in the hot room, I felt like I was safe, somehow at ease. I was still lost, and did not have any landmark to hold on to, as if I was left in the middle of nowhere. But that nowhere did not feel frightening, nor dangerous.
I’ll just skip the lesson, the sweat, the moaning and come directly to what’s a matter of interest. The final Savasana. For those who do not know, this is the final posture, laying down on your back, with wide open arms and legs, letting yourself go. And there, as a genuine beginner, I was reflecting on my class. What I achieved, what were my problems, how I was looking doing the postures, how come I could sweat that much, etc. But among those very superficial questions, some were quite fascinating. I was starting to understand my body, to feel it, its possibilities and its boundaries; I could feel that what I did to it was good, that the effects on my inner state where beneficial. And the atmosphere, welcoming, non-judgmental and gentle, was something I really love. One could work out without having to achieve anything, without self-judgments, with competing with others – even though I would still do those things at the beginning, I knew that yoga was not about that at all.
Discovering a New but not yet Vital World
For about half a year, I could only attend two classes a month…not much I know, but that was still something. And I could feel my body getting looser, stronger; I could see my toes in Standing Bow after a while, could place my entire hands on the floor in Forward Fold, things I thought would be impossible. When I left home to go to India, and then Vancouver shortly after that, I had to leave the studio for more than five months. But that did not change me. My body liked yoga, but was not craving for it. My muscles and joints were not yet calling for me to use them as much as I would in the future. I could feel the difference but not be that disturbed by it. And I guess there were two reasons for that. First, my not being that regular actually had an effet on my body and its yoga cravings. Second, my eating disorder.
Anorexia, the Worst/Best Chapter of My Life…
I could barely move. I was trapped. My hands and mind were driven by an everlasting guilt, a powerful feeling of control and yet disgust, of ecstasy and yet despair. As I was slowly going down the road of eating disorders, I thought I was the one driving, the one in charge, the master of my feelings, emotions, passions and desires. But I was not. My mind was twisted, when I thought I was controlling my demons, they were actually controlling me. When it all went wrong, I was not earning enough money, as I said, to pay for more classes. And I was travelling quite a lot. Therefore, I preferred not to eat a thing and walking/running as much as possible so that my weight loss would be better. I had no idea what health, nutrition or harmony meant. What my guts were asking for were bones, skinny legs, some kind of disappearance of the self. And sport actually sounded bad because I thought that if I would be active, I would grow muscles and put on weight. I had to limit the running then.
But when I came back, and realised I could not go further with this without killing myself (you can read my entire story here if you’d like :)), I started yoga again. I was working at various places, while being on a recovery process, and had no university/lectures/classes for about eight months. Therefore, I’ve been able to attend one class a week. And to avoid my parents blackmailing me, I was paying for the entire thing myself. The classes, clothes, towels, etc. Not only did it become my personal project, my work of art, but it also saved my life.
Throughout a more regular practice, I was able to develop a very deep awareness of my body, I could forget about all those food/weight related thoughts, letting them come and go in my mind. The focus and knowledge I had stared to develop long ago become much more powerful, simply magnified. In a nutshell, if it had not been for my yoga practice, I do not think I would ever have been able to get over anorexia that quickly.
A Life-Changing Teacher Training
Two years and a half after it all started, my yoga teacher, Heidi, came to me with the most delightful yet nearly impossible idea: a Warm Yoga Teacher Training, hosted at the studio. She convinced me, but I had to convince myself, my parents and my wallet. If I had listened to my parents, I would never have done it; just like with my wallet. But as I had nothing else to do in August 2016, I thought it would be a nice experience. Therefore, I had loads of expectations from the entire experience. But after the first day, I quickly realised I should not have any, anymore, and about anything.
In a nutshell, it was just a life changing experience. Not only did I created long-lasting friendships there, but I’ve learnt to listen to my body more, to live your day as if it was the last you’d spend on this earth, to own your body as you’re owning your voice, to stand proud on your two feet, to have courage, never to give up on what you love and still so much more…My practice improved in ways I would never have imagined, just like my self-confidence. I became an entirely new being, with a new voice, a new goal, a new look, a new glow, new experiences. Told you, it’s a life-changing experience!
My Life After the Training…
My life had also changed in unexpected ways. I learnt to enjoy new people’s company, as if I had multiple lives, my life as a yoga teacher and student, at the studio, my life as a human being, going to university and developing new interests, and my digital life. My philosophy on life, its waves of positivity and darkness, had changed as well – I would no longer take things for granted, no longer expect things from myself as well as others, no longer take things personally (at least trying haha!). My perspective on what a life well lived is has changed, I actually had plans but no standards, listening to every day’s vibes and trusting what was ahead. Last but not least, it also gave me new wings, wings I could use to fly over the healthy world and create my own way much easily, wings that would give me a new glow, a brand new reason to guide and inspire people, to show them that harmony, health and happiness is here, but that we’ve got to reach higher to get our hands on. On a less philosophical perspective, I am now a very happy yoga teacher, giving multiple classes through the week, hoping that I can inspire my students in whatever way they feel like behind inspired, talking and sharing what helped me reaching that happiness. If you’d like to know what kind of yoga do I teach, or see the places I teach at as well as my prices and events, you’re welcome to discover it all. Much love…Namaste!