Bread and Yoga, which is actually located in my first New York apartment building at 5000 Broadway at the very tip of Manhattan at 212th St, provides nutrition and cooking classes, and yoga to its Inwood community. I stopped in for a class led by my friend Rian Bodner. A little tired and a lot wiped from the night before, I stepped into Bread and Yoga’s inviting studio, gave Rian a hug and began our 90 minute class. Midway through (this sounds absurd) I broke my toe. This has happened to me before, in a yoga class, to the same toe. Though uncomfortable and bruised, I knew I could continue from past experience. But this made it hard to focus. One of the toughest things for me to do in practicing yoga is opening up on any one legged side pose, due to the lack of flexibility in (or so I blame it on) my hamstrings. I shakily held my half-assed Half-moon until Rian came around and adjusted me by gently putting me into position and holding me there. In my head, I thought, when he releases me, I will drop to the ground, because I cannot hold this position by myself. But I got there, with some assistance, so that’s proof that my body can (eventually) do that, right? If I could just pull my focus away from my broken toe, exhaustion, and my lack of flexibility and balance and start to add more discipline to my practice, I could do this, right?
Scrolling through my negative thoughts about my body, I realized I needed to let go a little bit. What is the worst that can happen? I fall two feet? Stumble? I can get there. We all can succeed on different levels. Whether it’s putting our body in a new position, losing 20 pounds, doing unassisted pull-ups, or reaching a career goal. Most things are not perfect right away. We can’t lose a lot of weight the right way over night. Most rewarding experiences take time. For me, so does getting into Half-moon without Rian’s adjustments! Let us strive to let go of the negativity and get out of our own way!