Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Another Goodbye...

As we head out of Ogden this morning bound for Fort Collins I find myself sad to leave a place for the 2nd time on our journey. Ogden is the place I have taught most of my yoga classes and the studio here is very special to me. Mike, the owner, has been a great teacher to me. I’ve learned about teaching and running a studio and he has been patient and understanding in ways most of the Bikram community has not. Bikram yoga sometimes attracts a very rigid type of person and some people use the yoga to grow more flexible in mind and body, and others don’t. I don’t fit well into rigid structures. Being here with these open people and being honored as a teacher by the students and the community has been very meaningful for me. The students here have welcomed me and what I know about the yoga and have made a special, warm place for me in their yoga practices and in their hearts. Mike has allowed me to grow as a teacher at my own pace and has given me space to make mistakes and to grow from them without ever making me feel that I wasn’t fully prepared to do the job I’ve taken on. The studio is one of the most beautiful I’ve ever been in, with a view of the mountains out the windows. Ogden is a beautiful town and finally, after all my visits, the weather has turned friendly at last. When a student here asked me if I would please stay, I told her in all seriousness that if it wasn’t so blasted cold here most of the year I would consider buying the studio, which is for sale. Still, my heart lies in another place and the changes I am seeking are bigger and farther than here in Ogden. So we go on. One of the lovely things that happened in our very short stay here in Ogden is that Jimmy took my yoga class for the first time. He has been practicing a little here and there when he found time but because I haven’t been teaching much in San Diego and he’s been working hard to prepare us for the move he hadn’t ever taken a real yoga class from me. I didn’t know he was coming last night to take my class so when he showed up with a smile on his face it put one on mine too. I loved having him in my class. He listened well and worked hard and took good care of his knee, still recovering from surgery in January. In other words, he was a perfect student. In a lovely day filled with joyful experiences that one stands out for me.

This morning before we left I “taught” my last class in Ogden Utah. Two students joined me for my silent practice and followed my body instead of my voice through their yoga practices. It was a lovely way to end my time here and it was a magical experience for all of us. When I came to Ogden first in January, looking for someplace to get some classes under my belt I never imagined how I would come to care for these people and this place. I never imagined how much I would learn and how completely they would help me to claim my place at the front of the room. I could never have imagined how much the people of this community would love me. I am deeply grateful for the place they’ve made for me. I will miss Ogden and the people I have grown to know here.

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