It’s been a roller coaster of a ride up to this point, but I wouldn’t trade a minute of it.
For years, my parents tried to get me healthy with what seemed to be little success. Ashamed I found myself yo-yoing through a plethora of eating disorders, depression and anxiety.
Deeply broken, I thought I’d never be good enough for anything.
But in 2001 at the suggestion of a caring soul, I found yoga.
My yoga mat became a weekly ritual of second chances, and those second chances eventually led me to a yoga teacher training. Yoga became a platform for me to help others and at the same time help myself.
Continuing to climb the walls of recovery, in 2006, I opened a yoga studio, married my high school sweetheart, and to our surprise, go pregnant.
But at 29 weeks pregnant we got news no new parent should ever hear, “I’m sorry, but your baby isn’t going to make it”.
And on May 23rd 2007 our tiny two pound daughter Faith was born into this world, and just 20 minutes later, died in my arms.
As others waited cautiously for me to relapse, I did the exact opposite. I took my grief to the mat, and it was there that I realized that through death, I was given the opportunity for life.
I believe my daughter did a brave thing and gave me the opportunity to forge on fully into recovery, the motivation to continue to heal my body, and the strength to heal myself and others.
Learning the value of the breath, and how to breath, became a life line for me as well as my students. And considering the average person takes 21,000-24,000 breaths a day, I’d say breathing is pretty important.
The yoga I know became a doorway for me to learn to live in my body again.
Learning how to be in my body became a critical step for my recovery, and relearning how to listen in closely because the body is the soul’s last attempt to get us to listen. And I desperately needed to start listening again. What other option did I have, it was learn to feel, and get uncomfortable on my mat at the hope to feel more comfortable in my own skin again-or die.
And finally, taming the mind, realizing that I am not my thoughts, and it starts with one simple thought- believing I am worth it.
It was through this process that I realized I wasn’t the only one not living in my body.
Fast forward to today, I’ve spent the last fifteen years studying, practicing, teaching and experiencing the breath, body and belief system (mind) so I can better help others. Filling my tool box for life with aspects of yoga, philosophy, spiritual studies, the mind, the science of the breath and body, functional (healthy movement and a safe way of looking at the human body) anatomy, a deep understanding of the importance of the core and how to integrate this all into our lives every single day. And a deep insight of what it truly means to live, love and have a life worth living.
I’ve filled in the gaps, and only teach what I have tried and practiced myself and found to be successful. And it is because of this that created the HOPE Process: Helping Others Purposefully Excel, using the three B’s: Breath, Body, Belief.
It’s these three B’s that I base my lifestyle and teaching’s on. How we breathe, how we move (or don’t move) and what our belief system (mindset) are at all determine our happiness, well-being, and how we see the world.
I believe that there is purpose for all of us in this life or we wouldn’t be here. Let’s not take another moment for granted and step into a life worth living!