"Don't Sh....t On Yourself." (Oh, the last full day at Kripalu and the things I have learned.)

This is the last day of my first module of training at Kripalu Institute.  I have met so many wonderful people, have grown by leaps and bounds in my practice, learned more than I ever thought I could, and felt some important life moments were achieved here.
Here are my reflections:
  1. The first day I at Kripalu Institute I was mainly silent and became a people watcher.  I went to meditation classes, yoga practices, and our initial meeting.  I ate by myself.  I tried to get used to dorm living (it has been a long time since OSU).  I smiled a lot, but I kept to myself.
  2. The second day we were assigned to small groups of four (there are 55 of us in my module of training), and the ladies in my quad asked me to eat with them on the lawn for dinner.  I asked a lot of questions especially to the ones who had been here previously or were trained here for the 200 hr RYT.  But, I must admit, I made a poor judgment call; and in our conversation I voiced a critical remark about someone.
  3. "Sorry,"  "I apologize,"  "Please forgive,"... these words have been the long road of my life's journey.  That night during my prayers I felt the need to say something, make a verbal request for overlooking my bad remark to one of the precious ladies from Long Island, NY.
  4. The next morning after practice, I approached this lovely lady from NY.  I said, "Please forgive me.  I should not have said what I did."
  5. She looked me in the eye, and said, "Don't "should" on yourself."  However, not hearing her correctly, I thought she said, "Don't sh#t on yourself."  It really shocked me and my virgin-like Bible Belt ears.  I have found that the people of the northeastern United States don't mince words and the "f" bomb is used quite frequently as if they were asking for you to pass the salt.
  6. I thought all day and all night about what I thought she said.  First, it shocked me.  Then, it caused me to ponder and reflect.  I did a lot of quiet self-study; I thought about how I treat myself and allow others to treat me.
  7. Gandhi said, "I want the freedom  for the full expression of my personality."  Yes, I do, too!  In fact, for far too long, I have basically just asked for forgiveness for being "me."  I am emotionally intelligent, I discern well and read between the lines with good intention of seeing the hidden message, I have a thirst for learning and continue to be a life-long achiever.  I am physically fit; while back extensions are not my best, I continue to work on them, inversions, and I love, absolutely adore, arm balances and push-ups.  I have a 56 year old body, some wrinkles, red hair with some issues, fair skin, lots of freckles, and have made many mistakes in my life; but by golly, I really like myself.  I love what I do. I am tired of making excuses for not teaching elementary school any more because I am so passionate about teaching yoga and truly love it.  I get very attached to my friends, family, and the people I teach so when they go away, I grieve.  Thanks to the rude person who once commented, but "No, I do not need to take valium for that problem."
  8. You see, we all matter.  All of us.  Not just the ones who are popular, attractive, thin, athletic, successful, have money, or never err.  God loves us all the same.  He doesn't judge through Facebook glasses or according to what is the popular fad at the time. I believe God expects us to love generously, be humble, but I don't think He ever meant for me to continuously "@$#&" on myself.
  9. So, if you see me in the future, and I don't apologize, please remember.  This is my new learning curve, and I am going full force into what tomorrow holds.  Hang on, I promise it will be quite the ride.
  10. For all the people who have loved me, accepted me, treasured me, and respected me, thank you. Even when I couldn't give that to myself, you modeled it for me.  Thanks, Jay, for the time you told me, "Mom, stop apologizing."  Truth comes in many packages.  I am so thankful for those of you who have gone the extra mile to help me see the truth.  As my wonderful husband Brian would say, 

But, don't sh...t on yourself.


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