Monthly Archives: January 2013

What do you wanna see?

Hi all!

Nothing too exciting about this post, BUT wanted to let you all know I have added a new tab to my blog! Its called Resources and Such. It’s basically a list of links on the background of Ashtanga yoga and some of my favorite blogs that I follow.

Also- my goal is to be a bit more interactive with this blog…so I ask my readers..what do YOU want to see? Are there topics you want to read about? TELL ME or ASK ME!! And I can try my best to give you a satisfactory post with my limited yet growing knowledge lol.

Slowly making improvements with this blog, but thank you to all those who keep reading!! XO

Ally

Blessing and a Lesson

So, I’m at school, its a 9:30 on a friday night and I am in bed. Lol. I made a “late” pasta dinner around 7, had a glass of wine, and popped in the Wedding Date on my computer. I’m wild, I know. But to be honest, this is my kind of night…and I get to sleep in tomorrow! No practice! I learned from my friend Michael “TGIP” or “Thank God its Primary”…another Ashtanga joke. We do led primary on Fridays in Mysore and that is what I have been doing here too, so every Friday its nice just to do primary and knowing tomorrow is a rest day 🙂 So, TGIP!!

I have noticed that the past two weeks that my emotions are raging…like the oddest things will trigger these deep emotions and tears. I teared up TWICE in my English class the other day…like what??? Or maybe I’ll be reading blogs and I just start sobbing…not really sure why though. Then my friend Ivana brought up the point that when you start doing intermediate series in Ashtanga and start doing deeper backbends…it will bring up emotions. Sometimes ones you can’t explain. The second series is called “Nadi Shodhana” which basically means the cleansing of your nervous system. It all makes so much more sense now! Asana practice can be a very powerful things.

These crazy emotions have also brought me some clarity in the past few days. I just finished up the first week of classes. They were fine…teachers are good, the times are good…but I was so blah about them. Last night for some reason I remembered when I was in Mysore and I first met my friend Elise. She is 25, from Canada, and she was on her fourth trip to Mysore! Anyway, I remember we met at the coconut stand and when we were walking back towards our apartments I was telling her my school/study plans. She asked me if I was excited about what I was studying and I just remember shrugging saying something like “ya kinda, I guess.” She told me when she changed her major to something that she loved, she was like “wow, I love school.” At the time, that didn’t really resonate. Maybe because it wasn’t time for it to. But the second I had that flash back, I logged onto App States website and scrolled through every major until I found something that lit a spark…and I did. So, as of today I am a declared Global Studies major with a minor in non-profit management. It was like this was specifically designed for me and I could not be more excited about it. Global Studies basically focuses on cultural studies, comparative relgions, globalization/development, human rights, peace and conflict..ect. All of which are things I am already passionate about. So, now I can say “wow, I love school.”

I have come to notice that out here in the West, I am too guilty of this, that many people think of school as this burden. Like its just one other thing to get done, so we charge right through it. Where as in India, school is such a gift. Vince and I played badminton with some local guys (around my age) around four in the afternoons right after they get done with classes at the engineering university in the city. If you ask them about school, there eyes just light up because they love it so much. So, this semester my goal was to have the same attitude toward my education, see it through their eyes. I was initially an International Business major but I knew in my heart that this was quite right, but now that I changed majors I know for certain. To be a student is really one of the greatest gifts, and we all have to opportunity to be one if you are open to it. I see myself as a student on my yoga mat every morning, in the classroom, and in life in general. When you open yourself up, you’ll be amazed at how much richer life is. Always do what you love. Always.

The people I have met along the way, are huge reasons why my attitude toward life has changed and why I see things from a new perspective. Many of which I met in India, which I believe is why I went, why I NEEDED to go. Every person that comes (and goes) in your life is said to be a lesson or a blessing. This may be true, but I have met so many that have been both. So for those who have been a lesson and a blessing in my life, no words will ever be able to express my gratitude and love for you. Thank you.

Comfy Cozy

So, I am all moved in my cute lil apartment here in Boone, NC and I am very content. Classes start on Monday so I have had this week to nest and adjust. Yesterday I got my schedule all sorted out and I have officially declared my major as International Business…and I am SO excited. This is the first time I can ever remember being excited for school and to study. I was planning on doing some broad communication/marketing major but that certainly did not spark any interest for me. I have decided that this time around in school is going to be different, I only want to study and do things that I truly want. I think before I chose what would be the easiest and what I think was expected of me. But not this time! I’m required to take a language throughout my study as a IB major so I decided French. And no, I have never taken a French class and my background is spanish, but I have always wanted to learn it. After meeting so many bi or TRI-lingual people in Mysore, I am more inspired than ever to learn a new language, like actually learn it well enough to communicate. Will it be hard? Most likely but I up for the challenge. Also as an IB major we are required to do a semester abroad..yes REQUIRED. Okay fine twist my arm. App State has so many direct exchange programs with Universities all over the world…like over 100! So, I am beyond excited to do more traveling. I think I am just excited about life in general these days.

Also some more good news…I finally had a interview for a waitress/serving job so fingers crossed! I think once I start working I’ll really start to feel back at ease. I’ve always enjoyed working and being apart of another community outside my usual ones. And if I have any hope of getting back to Mysore in December I NEED to work lol.

As for my practice, its good and steady. I won’t go into any detail b/c it can get boring. My dad bought me two of those plastic mats that you put under office chairs if you have carpet. Since my room is all carpet, they have actually worked really nicely to put my yoga mat on to practice haha. So until I get back to the shala, Shala de Ally will have to do. Since i have base board heating in my room, I can crank it up so I can actually break a sweat too so its actually quite comfy and cozy in my room to practice in.

So, ill wrap it up for today. But I am quite comfortable here up in the mountains and I think it may be the prettiest place ever to go to school. Looking forward to what the future has in store, but also enjoying the now. XO

 

Yes, it has been a while since my last post…I wanted to give myself some time to adjust and process everything since I arrived back home. It has been about 3 and a half weeks since I landed back in the USA and to be honest its been really, really tough. Before I left mysore people had given me a heads up that re-entry back into everyday life is hard, especially after your first trip. My first week was fine actually…maybe because I took a trip to Boone, NC and that kept my mind distracted but then the second week back rolled around and reality set in. I am not in Mysore anymore. I won’t be seeing my beloved teacher everyday. I won’t be exploring the city with my friends. And I won’t be enjoying fresh coconuts every morning. So I cried, and cried, and cried some more. I was straight up sad, and became very quite..to the point my parents thought I was mad all the time. But I wasn’t, just sad. But I have kept practicing, the same practice that Sharath left me with, Full primary and up to Laghu Vajrasana in the intermediate series. (But still just primary on fridays 🙂 The drastic change in weather was definitely a shock to the bod…I was SORE, like really sore and I can still barely work up a sweat even with a space heater next to my mat. Since I do not have a shala with a Mysore program close to my house, its been all home practice…in our little sunroom. It will have to do. Everyday I become less and less sad and more and more grateful for my 2.5 months in Mysore, especially when I am on my mat. Though there are times my heart string that is still tied tightly 8,000 miles away is tugged hard.

I don’t think I will ever be able to explain in words to anyone what happened to me over there or how I feel about the whole thing. But all I know is that I was meant to go and to keep going back. Sometimes I’m scared I will wake up and it was all a long, crazy dream…because sometimes it feels that way. But it wasn’t. I was so, so real. Thank goodness for facebook lol. Since I have been back the famous question has been, “So, how was India?” That’s kind of like asking someone “So, how was it having cancer?” You can’t answer it because the entire process or journey was so experiential…you can’t really explain it. So all I can really say back to that is “magical”, because it was. Also, when I tell people about my trip a common response is “Wow! Thats a once-in-a-lifetime trip!” And that comment literally makes my stomach turn. Because I do not want it to be a once in a lifetime thing…in fact it really scares me. Scares me enough to make sure I do go back…many times. Why do I want to keep going back? Thats another question thats really hard to answer. But, its time to work on only myself, to listen to what needs to be heard, and to continue to heal.

So, its a New Year! 2013. The year I am supposed to graduate, but God had a bit of a different plan for me so it’ll be 2014 until I can finally hold that diploma. And thats completely okay with me. Anyway, I can feel like this year is going to be much different than last. Though 2012 could not have ended on a better note, it definitely had a rough start. And thats okay too. In fact I am so thankful for all the obstacles, hardships, and shit that has been handed to me. Why? because If one thing had gone differently, I would have never have gone to India. And for that, I am eternally grateful for all the shit. I have never felt stronger really, my physical body, my mental body, and especially my spiritual body. I feel ready for what lies ahead, whatever that may be. I journey back down to school in two days and I KNOW that will come with many challenges, but I’m equipped with the best tool out there, my yoga practice. Yes, I do miss Mysore so much that when I think about it I tear up, but I know in my heart I will be back. (Trying to make it back this year but can’t get too attached to the idea yet.) Thankfully Sharath will be in NYC in April and I seriously cannot wait. Just to see him will keep my time in Mysore alive…and until I get back for my second trip when I can really let go of the fear of it being a “once in a lifetime trip” and that I am able to keep going back.

One of my mantras this year is “Nothing is impossible.” Because I can honestly say that my trip to Mysore and my daily Ashtanga practice has taught me that. My second is simply “have faith.” Because I have lacked this for so long, and the second I started having a bit again, the universe opened up for me.

I wish all of you a very happy and healthy new year. Don’t be afraid to make changes, take a risk, and have a little bit of faith. Love to you all. XO