Monday evening yoga is my favorite, but it means packing up my items early in the morning, during the pre-work rush. When packing for yoga class, I recommend taking an extra moment to ensure you have selected the right items. Otherwise, the results can be quite revealing.
Monday night yoga is the best: It’s free, with a great instructor, and it’s a fun mix of yogis, several I know through work and a whole bunch I don’t know at all except as familiar faces from class. Sometimes we squint at each other in the dim light and it takes a moment to recognize each other since we’re in tights and tanks or some other comfy attire. No skirts or jackets or high heels here. No shoes at all, actually. In fact, we agreed last night: “This is the ‘real’ us.”
The conversation grows to a not-so-soft roar as we sit cross-legged on the floor, waiting for Jen to get us warmed up with a little pre-yoga neck/shoulder rub using Sambra (really!). Unlike most yoga classes that are quiet and meditative, whispering and library-like…we celebrate making it through another Monday. Fresh enough off the weekend to recap with friends, but happy to have day-one of the new week behind us.
The next hour of bending, balancing and “downward dogging” is a great physical workout and, for me, it’s like a mental massage. Thanks to the deep and measured breathing, I can feel the clutter fall away from my mind. Focusing on staying balanced means focusing on…nothing else. To fail means to fall!
Last night, unfortunately, my focus was shattered when, during a particularly bendy kind of move, I discovered that in my early morning rush, I had not tossed my yoga capris in my bag. Instead I had grabbed some old running tights…the ones I meant, so many times, to throw out. Oh why hadn’t I done that!!! My freshly-cleared mind suddenly screeched back to the here and now when I noticed, from my upside down view, all the loose threads. No, please no. Surely I didn’t. Yes, I did. The capris with the seam falling apart.
Now what? Thanks to the arrangement of our mats, bending in one direction meant I was safe…the other direction meant the entire class was behind me. What to do? I evaluated the situation from my unusual vantage point. I was desperate for the physical and mental workout and would feel incomplete if I packed up and left; every other person in the class was a woman (well, except for the ONE guy who was almost directly behind me. Ya.); and the lighting was dim. Then I remembered, we had already decided this was the “real us”! And truly, on the inside I was feeling pretty tattered and torn, too. No. I would not give up and walk away. I just couldn’t.
So, I forged ahead and tried to focus on being aware of the other yogis’ view and tried to be somewhat ladylike. Sure, a modest Downward Dog? At least we didn’t do Happy Baby!
In the end (no pun intended), I’m sure no one even noticed, and I did a lot of much-needed laughing inside. Best of all, I had persevered and finished the class after a long and difficult day. And to top it off, I think I learned to take myself just a little less seriously.