It’s been awhile I know. Just to clear up a few questions I’ve been asked over the past few months.

No, I haven’t gone into retirement early.
No, I’m not in the depths of despair.
No, I haven’t turned my back on yoga.

I’m sorry it’s taken me longer than usual to reply to emails. The past six months have been a hive of activity. My quiet exterior has done well at hiding a hectic undercurrent.

We have constructed a new studio from the ground up. With the doors now open, I’ve realised the process of plastering, painting, tiling, laying floorboards and installing windows has highlighted a few things.

The exhausted joy that comes from physical labour.  The deep appreciation that comes when you don’t outsource.  Knowledge on every button and every sound. Crafting the aesthetics, function, intention and purpose behind everything.

Even more I’ve realised the similarity between building a studio and building wellness.

The joy and relief that comes from moving. The deep appreciation of doing the hard work to understand physical and mental layers, injuries and habits. Flagging when you need help (learnt the hard way via broken tiles, falling plasterboard and chipped marble).

Getting down and working in the trenches has been the only way to create an opportunity to step up and out of the dirt, muck and sweat.  Where I now step is a studio space that does justice to what yoga does for wellness.

I love change. My parents loved buying “renovators delights” (sh*t boxes) so I grew up in more houses than most. COVID for me bought an opportunity for change that I embraced but I’ve been reminded that not everyone shares my change fuelled exhilaration.

In conversations I’ve had over the past six months with change-strugglers, I’ve talked about the whole of 2020 being like a yoga class. It had a predictable start. Lay on back, knees bent, deep breathing. That’s how we start every class.

The middle went to sh*t. The middle of a yoga class takes you to a peak. A peak of work, discomfort and unfamiliar movements, sensations and demands.

The end of yoga is where it all comes together. A deeply satisfying rest. It’s only satisfying because of the work that preceded it. A body that feels different to how it arrived. A new perspective. Joy and gratitude for the change.

And so will be the same for 2020.

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