Stepping Out

Welcome to 2020. It is glorious to be here with you.

Our little family of 5 has begun a new tradition in the past couple of months. It is that of “thanking ourselves.” We sit at the dinner table and if someone has something they know they did but also know that others won’t really know about otherwise – and gosh darnit they want to be seen for it – then they announce, “I would like to thank myself for…” Emptying the dishwasher. Or picking up my room. Or cleaning up the cat puke. Or whatever. We all tend to giggle when we go around and thank ourselves. It’s a funny feeling but there is also a reverential silence.

So, as the New Year kicks off, I want to thank myself for something.

I would like to thank myself for doing hard work on myself and for loving myself. And for continually practicing the art of “give time time.”

My heart used to sit in fractures. Rachel the parent had a specific toolbox of tone and mannerisms. Which gave way to having to “ramp up” for Rachel the yoga teacher. Which gave way to crashing after teaching for “Rachel who just left it all on the floor.” Which gave way to the cycle repeating itself. And then there was “Rachel the sister” and “Rachel the wife” and “Rachel the daughter” and on and on. It took a lot of energy to switch masks, tones, and (figurative) makeup in all of those scene changes.

And I didn’t even know I was doing it.

I just knew I was perpetually exhausted, suffering many migraines, and overall unsettled. I felt like something was missing and I didn’t even know what it was.

Then I was given the gift of authentic community. I was given the gift of learning more about the science of my body and brain, more about embodied movement, and more about the science of Ayurveda.

Most importantly, beyond the concepts, I was given the structure and support to practice the integration of the concepts into my life in my own very particular and unique way. And over time, I saw the fractured Rachel merge into one Rachel.

Just me.

I am me. In whatever I do, I get to be me. Because that’s actually all I’ve got. Me. Steady and ever present Me. All of it is Me. All of it is now fed by my heart.

Is my business really my heart? Undoubtedly it is. The Rachel that parents her children also works with my clients. The Rachel that loves her grieving friends and family is also the Rachel that leads my teacher training. The Rachel that moves in her morning practice is also the Rachel that listens to my husband. Me. Myself. And I. So, yes, my business is my heart. I can say that with full conviction.

And my heart has two things right now that are close to its center that I find vulnerable and scary and unknown. Because I don’t know if they will be received by the public “out there.” I don’t know if they will be valued. I don’t know if they will be wanted.

So, I feel my short and tight breath. I pause for it and offer it acknowledgment, “I feel your sticky and scared – and I’m with you breath. I also know that these offerings are needed… so we’ll step forward together, breath. All is well.”

Here we go.

Share time for a couple of big things that present opportunities for us to be together.

1) SAVE THE DATE: YogaFest, Saturday, March 28th
For the first time, I will teach at YogaFest in Raleigh. This is the largest annual fundraiser for You Call this Yoga (YCTY), an organization that tirelessly provides yoga opportunities for underserved populations. I am deeply grateful to support YCTY in the work that they do. I would love for anyone who will be in the Raleigh area to come and join me on this day for my session as well as any other teachers that pique your interest. More information is at www.YogaFestNC.com . I’ll keep you posted on registration details as they are released.

2) 2020-21 Teacher Emersion Program, Begins March 13th
Susan Jackson, my dear friend and colleague, and I are slated to begin our second Teacher Emersion Program the weekend of March 13th. This program is unique. It is demanding in its curriculum both in the classroom and on your own time – exploring biomechanics and movement on your mat, applying Ayurveda in your everyday life, living the ethical precepts of yoga and selected tenets of Buddhism, and practicing the integration of all of these tools. The core word that both Susan and I use here is “integration.” This training values what yoga can bring to a class of students in a studio – and will certify you to teach others as a registered yoga teacher with Yoga Alliance – yet its focus and  structure assume that trainees are taking the tools as far as they desire into their own lives.

At present, we have a handful of dedicated and ready students – and we desire to find 1 or 2 more with equal passion for the work. This is not to be taken lightly and we know that. If you are ready to understand your body, your mind, and your heart with more skill and depth – if you are interested in delving into becoming a superb learner and your own best teacher – then please do reach out to us. Rachel@PureResilienceYoga.com and Sunny.Yoga@gmail.com .
We know you’re out there… we just don’t know who you are yet. 🙂


That’s it for now. I sit on this chair in my living room as the weather turns grey and the rain moves in. The few remaining dried brown leaves skitter dance with one another. The birds chirp in staccato and the distant cars go in whoosh. I sit here. While you sit there. Wherever you are. With whatever it is that you see and hear.

Wherever and however our paths cross, may our ripples travel far and wide.

Oh, and if you haven’t done so already, go ahead and thank yourself for something. That will be a ripple all in itself.

With gratitude,

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