Sunday, January 17, 2010

Dancing Yogini

A change is as good as a rest.
- Some Australian dude I met once in a shoe store

A friend asked me the other day, after reading my blog post about ballet class, if I was done with yoga. The answer is, absolutely not!

If anything, my yoga practice has been reinvigorated by the new challenge of trying to keep up with teenagers in a ballet class. I was able the handle a much tougher workout than I had anticipated, and I am a lot stronger - especially in my core - than I was when I was dancing regularly fifteen years ago. That is all due to my daily yoga practice.

The fact that I know my dancing wasn't always pretty and I was okay with that is also because of my yoga practice. I am able to enjoy the process - of anything really - a lot more than I did in the past. I'm 46 years old. I have physical limitations. I am never going to dance like a professional dancer, and I am never going to do Eagle pose without feeling it in my shoulders. And it's all okay.

It occurred to me one morning, as I was stepping over the edge of the tub and feeling it in my quads, to question the wisdom of starting ballet again at my age. Then I realized: if not now, when? This is not something I'd be wise to postpone. And besides, I've had it up to here (picture me with one hand about a foot over my head, and typing like gangbusters with the other) with postponing things I really want to do, waiting for some mythological someday that never comes.

One of the important things my yoga practice has taught me is that life is lived daily. Good days, bad days - they all make up a life. Some days yoga is a struggle, some days it flows. I know the same will be true of ballet class. And I plan to enjoy every minute of it.

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