When I was asked to contribute to this series I didn't think it would be hard to come up with something that I'd consider useful to readers.
“Talk about the benefits of the yoga practice during pregnancy” was the topic requested.
I thought to myself, I'll get it done in no time. I mean, I've been teaching for close to 10 years, done a variety of pre/post natal trainings, attended births and work with pre/post natal clients on a regular basis. Piece of cake right?
Well it turns out, it has taken me days to complete this piece, mainly because I can't find the words to describe how rewarding this work is and how fortunate I feel to be able to share this journey with so many women.
After hours of frustration in front of the screen I decided to let it go. I decided to stop comparing what I was writing to the other pieces I've read. I decided to stop worrying about whether the information I wanted to share was useful or not, or whether I was covering all the health and safety precautions I thought everyone would want to know about.
On day three of me trying to finish this piece, I put the computer down, went for a walk, grabbed a green smoothie and the words “keep an open mind” came to me. Voila!!
In my experience in the past few years, women during this period are full of excitement but also fear. When it comes to physical activity, phrases such as: “you shouldn't do this or that, be careful with this or are you sure that's ok?” are thrown around more often than not by well intentioned loved ones. However, most times without realizing the effect those words can have on a person.
This is a period of immense physical and mental shifts.
I strongly believe that we always know what is best for us but we sometimes get sidetracked or blinded by the “noise” outside of us.
This is where the practice of yoga comes in.
If you decide to attend a class or hire a private teacher, hopefully you will find someone who will create an environment where you can be yourself.
You should be allowed to share your thoughts and feelings without any judgement.
Some women have really tough pregnancies. They should be allowed to say “I hate being pregnant” the same way other women should be allowed to express the complete opposite, because guess what, both types of pregnancy experience exist and both are valid.
The yoga room should be a place were we connect with ourselves in any way that works for us.
My job as a teacher is not to tell women what's best for them. Information is power and by information I don't only mean what the doctor, the chiropractor or the midwife says. By information I also mean what you are feeling, what you are thinking, what you want, etc.
If I can pick one useful thing about the yoga practice is that it teaches us that the one thing we can control is our attitude.
So once we have all the information we can possibly accumulate to take care of our body and our health, our job is to choose our attitude.
In pregnancy, as in life, things don't always go exactly as expected; as a yoga teacher I’m only here to help women find what they already have within them.