I feel like I’ve been simultaneously sad and excited to write this post. Sad because the training itself is over, and there won’t be any more 3-day weekends spent with my entire, wonderful yoga group. But mostly excited because I completed my long-term goal of becoming a yoga teacher! Eight months flew by SO fast, it’s I can’t believe it’s over. It’s hard to put into words what I truly gained from this experience, but I will say it brought out the best in me. This journey didn’t play out like I thought it would, but certain events have now set me on an unexpected path, and I’m wholeheartedly embracing it.
Our “final exam” consisted of each of us putting together an hour long sequence to submit to Carrie and Jillian, and then teaching 30 minutes of that sequence in this final weekend together. We were able to sequence and teach the style that appealed to us most, so I chose a slow flow/deep stretch. I had taught my sequence to friends and coworkers in the week leading up to my teaching day, but I was still pretty nervous that morning. Once I got up there though, I got into my element and it went great. I felt really comfortable and got great feedback. And I think everyone appreciated my 90s/00s pop-infused playlist 🙂
While it was exhausting taking 11 other 30-minute classes that weekend, I really enjoyed getting to experience the variety of styles each person taught. They ranged from yin and restorative to arm balances and power, and everything in between. But most of all, it was so awesome to see how far we’ve all come in our teaching from day one. Every one of us rocked it out of the park!
Karma Projects, Vision Boards & Journaling
Teaching took up all of Friday and Saturday, so most of Sunday was spent in a little more of a relaxing state. We all brought in some tasty treats to share with the group, and then circled up to talk. We started by discussing our karma projects, which consisted of a minimum of two hours spent doing something good for the community. My karma project was teaching free yoga classes to my coworkers. I had started doing this on occasion earlier this year and enjoyed it so much. I love bringing yoga to people, and am happy to be able to do it more now. Listening to the other karma projects was really heartwarming. I’m continually in awe at how much love this group of people is spreading into the world.
Each of us also made our own vision board to share with the group, and they were all really awesome. I decided to focus mine on career goals, specifically the styles of yoga I want to continue to research and eventually teach (Kundalini being one), my writing aspirations, and my desire to go on one yoga retreat a year, effectively allowing me to travel to awesome places at the same time. But the goal that’s closest to my heart is that of obtaining more spiritual training. I miss Shane every damn day, but his death has inspired me to use my newfound skills for healing myself and others. I have tapped into my own spiritual and psychic abilities (which we all have at our core if we know how to use them) and have been able to connect with him multiple times. I have started training myself in seeing auras and interpreting the feelings and visions I get. I feel like I can’t let this skill go to waste, so my first step is to obtain training in Reiki (spiritual energy healing). From there, we’ll see what happens!
After our vision board discussion, we did some personal journaling, focusing on what we’re taking away from this experience, what’s next for us, and what we want to say to the group. I couldn’t even begin to write how much I’m taking with me, but I condensed it down to simply a more open, compassionate heart and friendships that mean the absolute world to me. I feel like this experience has awakened me in a sense, like there was my life before YTT and my life after YTT. My immediate next steps in addition to the Reiki training are being able to teach new classes at my firm! I’ll be teaching two slow flow classes a week, which will give me great experience and the chance to further connect with my coworkers.
And what to say to the group of people who have become my soul tribe over the last eight months…I say thank you. Thank you for opening up to me, and allowing me to open up to you. Thank you for the laughs, the tears and the amazing adventures, including getting lunch and Popbar almost every training weekend. Thank you for your encouragement and your feedback. Thank you for holding space (#holdspace!). Thank you for the shoulders to cry on. Thank you for being there for me with your whole hearts in the hardest time of my life, and continuing to be there for me now. It dawned on me that had I not been in this training when I lost Shane, I don’t know what would have happened. I hesitate to say I would have followed in his footsteps, but it wouldn’t have been out of the question. I found my strength and voice in these people, and I am forever grateful that they are in my life. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it one last time: I could have been in any other training program, but I chose this one, and I believe I chose it for a reason.
Just before getting our certificates, we did one last activity. We passed around a ball of yarn, wrapping it around each of our wrists in the process. Whoever you gave the yarn to, you were to say what you love most about that person, and then say what you are taking away from this experience. In the end, we had our own web of yarn connecting all of us. Then we cut the yarn and kept our new bracelets as a sign of that forever connection.
Then came the moment we’d all been waiting for. We were each awarded our official 200-RYT certificate, proving that we really did it!! Carrie and Jillian also gave us each a book by Mark Nepo, which I cannot wait to read.
We’ve all come such a long way from that first weekend in February, when we didn’t know each other or what we were getting ourselves into. I’ll cherish each and every one of these people and memory that we’ve made together. I couldn’t have chosen a better program or group to share it with. Thank you all for reading and following this incredible journey with me over the past eight months. I still choke up knowing that it’s over, but then again, it’s also just beginning. ❤