Once again I am back in my happy place, Mysore, which is going to be home for the next two months. Every time I make it here, I would have had to jump through hoops to make it happen. Different obstacles each time. And this time was no different. From the usual anxieties of “Will I be accepted by the shala to practice?” and finding decent accommodation at reasonable prices to worrying that my students and the studio will be well taken care of while I am gone. Thankfully, everything came together at the right moment allowing me to be here now.
Massive changes have taken place since a mere eight months ago, when I returned from my last trip to Mysore. Changes in the form of my own personal and professional development. On a personal front, this has been, and continues to be a year of practising being brave enough to realise what I truly want and start moving towards it.
Another realisation that came to me was – Balance. In everything you do, always find balance. Maybe not immediately, but eventually. Create enough space in your life for everything that matters to you. Friends, family, significant others, passions, practice, careers, money.
Professionally, as a teacher, I continue to observe, learn and get to know each one of my students so as to better guide them through their Ashtanga practice, because not an any moment do I forget the reality that it is not ME teaching them but in fact, the practice teaching them. My job is simply to hold space and motivate these already dedicated individuals to investigate and discover more about themselves as they move through their asanas. But mostly, all I do is pretend to act tough so that they will practice to the best of their ability every time they are on the mat.
In the run up to Mysore 2016, so many little things and big things needed to be sorted. I felt stressed, anxious and in doubt that I would get it all done. My practice was also taking a back seat. and I was sadly feeling a little disconnected from it. It almost felt like Singapore was not ready to let me go!
But depart I finally did, all excited to focus on my practice with my teacher once again. Travelling through the night, we arrived in the wee hours of the morning and the next afternoon, set off to register at KPJAYI. Registering at the shala, was a practice in patience in itself. After filling in the necessary forms, we quietly sat in line and waited for our turn. I remember glancing at the clock as I took my place in the line. It was 3.15 pm. By the time I exited the shala, it was close to 6 pm!!
I made my way back to the shala the next morning feeling excited about the first led class of the season. At the first moment of ‘Ekam inhale’ I was transported right back into my practice. My old friend, who never really went anywhere, who was just always there patiently waiting for me. Hearing Sharath’s comforting monotone interspersed with some jokes and teasing lulled me into the zone, where it was just breath and movement and little else. I emerged from the final resting pose feeling happy and content that my time here with me, myself and my practice has just begun. Lots to look forward to. Beautiful friendships to be made. Thought-provoking conversations to be had. Introspective alone time to be enjoyed.