I’ve been practicing yoga for ten years. I was introduced to it in college. I needed a PE credit and decided I would try it. I love everything about it. Yoga continues to teach me so much about living in the present and taking a deep breath and really taking notice of the world around me. Yoga allows people to connect on a deeper level. I think it has something to do with being able to feel the spiritual energy of others. I love when my alarm goes off in the morning because yoga helps me appreciate life in a way that I never did before. I love the feeling of my hands and feet pushing into the mat while doing a downward dog. Every time I do that pose I can hold it a little bit longer and push my body higher. I’ve always wanted to be a yoga teacher and open my own studio one day, but I graduated college seven years ago and until last month, I never attended a single class.
I’ll admit that doesn’t make a lot of sense. How am I supposed to achieve any of my aforementioned goals if I don’t actually walk into a studio? Well, I walk differently than you. I’m not perfect. My balance isn’t great and I sometimes even fall, usually for no apparent reason. I was born with cerebral palsy. It’s caused by lack of oxygen to the brain at birth. I wanted to be born six weeks earlier then I was supposed to be and my mom’s Dr couldn’t get me out fast enough. During that struggle, which lasted a few minutes, I couldn’t breathe. In my case, CP causes my legs to be stiff and spastic. When you get the chance, stand up, lock your knees and tighten your legs as much as you can and try to walk that way. It’s definitely challenging. It looks weird and causes me to be self conscious sometimes.
My parents decided to move to Marietta a few months ago. I used to work full time but my job was getting really difficult for me and it wasn’t my passion so I chose to go with them. I haven’t found a new job yet, so I’ve had a lot of free time. I noticed one day while riding my pink tricycle that there is a beautiful yoga studio in Marietta Square. One day last month, I got enough courage to go in. I was so scared that the teachers wouldn’t know what to do with me and that other students would think I shouldn’t join their class. Fortunately, that hasn’t happened. Everyone who practices yoga in that studio is so different and that difference makes this great group of people so beautiful. I’m not great at every yoga pose, but I am good at some of them. I was very surprised to learn that everyone else is in that same situation.
I’m definitely not a perfect yoga student and certainly won’t be a perfect teacher. Sometimes, I compare myself to other people and judge my body too harshly. I’m trying not to do that though. I’m here on this earth for some reason and the path I take is unique to me. If I spend my time in a yoga class wishing my body looked like someone else’s, I’ve missed the opportunity to learn and make my practice stronger. The same is true with life. I’ll never be another person. I only get one body. I only get one chance at this thing we call life. I’m going to have to live the best I can with what I have been given.
I’ve really taken time this past month to appreciate my own gifts and finally practice yoga with other people. My passion for this art has definitely grown. I’m starting to embrace being different a little bit at a time. I realize that I can achieve all of my goals eventually. My disability will only get in my way if I let it. None of the yoga teachers I’ve met so far are perfect. Their imperfections make them more relatable which I appreciate. I hope that everyone who reads this decides to be brave and go after their own dreams. I hope one day humanity collectively decides to embrace their differences rather then fear them. I know it’s probably almost impossible not to compare yourself to someone else on occasion. I know I can’t promise not to do that. I’ve decided though that when that happens, I’m going to close my eyes and open my heart a little more and take a deep breath.
Brianna Murray is a free spirited flower child who wishes to bring peace, love and happiness to the world around her. She loves being with her family and two dogs. She enjoys traveling and has friends from around the world. She has been a camp counselor for several camps and enjoys working with children. Brianna received her Bachelors Degree from Georgia College and State University in Communication. Writing is one of her passions. She believes that life experience is humanity’s greatest teacher and often shares her own life with others through her writing. She loves makeup, fashion, singing and spending time with friends.
Would you like to blog on MYS? Reach out here!