As a new teacher, I am actively seeking and incredibly excited about opportunities to teach yoga, so when Doris called me last Thursday morning to ask if I would teach Thursday’s and Sunday’s classes at Sol Yoga, I said yes with enthusiasm and excitement. In the same moment though, I was feeling deep sadness for Doris because she was asking me to teach because her father was not well and she had to fly out immediately to be with him.
Holding these conflicting emotions, I had moments of awkwardness where I wondered if I should feel guilty for being excited about something positive that happened in my life as a result of something negative happening in someone else’s life. But my yoga practice brought me to the place where I could find comfort in the discomfort of these conflicting emotions.
And, this is one of the many gifts of the yoga practice. We train ourselves on the mat, through a five-minute pigeon hold or a lengthy sequence of warrior postures, to find comfort and peace in the midst of discomfort.
And, we carry this skill off of the mat and into our lives. We learn to hold conflicting experiences or feelings with acceptance and recognize that life can be messy and that there is the space to let ourselves and our experiences and our feelings, no matter how contradicting, simply be.