During my week of training I had many revelations but one that surprised me was during our last talking circle. When it was my turn to speak, I heard the words come out of my mouth rather than consciously knew what I was saying;
“I no longer want to live in a city. I want to live by the ocean and I feel Sligo or France would work."
Those of you, who know me, know that living on the west coast has been a longtime dream of mine, but hearing myself admit it out loud in a circle, felt very real. I even knew the place I wanted to go to, which has always been my challenge. I knew I wanted to live by the ocean for years but I didn’t know where my place was. I had ideas of Co. Clare at one point, Portugal and Mallorca on other days but there was always something not quite right. As I heard Sligo come out of my mouth I realized that it wasn’t such a foreign place for me. My grandfather is from the county and I have long held an affinity with the energy there. It feels mystical and inherently balanced in its’ feminine and masculine energies with its’ location on the Wild Atlantic Way and the ancient myths and legends that are held in the land.
I believe in fate and the power of being in the right place at the right time but I think a part of me still had a lack of trust in this. The last few weeks have taken these last threads of mistrust and thrown them out the window. Everything happens for a reason… my Mam says this to me on a regular basis especially when I find myself in my head analyzing things rather than feeling into where I am at. What I said stayed with me as I travelled home, and as I moved into the week following the training, I was scrolling through social media and a post came to my attention: "Yoga Instructor Wanted". As I saved the image and reminded myself to look at it later, one of my friends sent the same post to me via what's app stating that this would be perfect for me and I knew then I needed to pursue it. I then sat with it and waited to hear more.
Within a few days I had an email arrive from another avenue that was a surprise but as I read its contents, one that I had felt was coming. This one raised a lot within me emotionally. After seven years of creating an amazing community, Init Yoga was closing its doors and not because it wanted to, but because of the greed and big business that has been slowly creeping back into Dublin. The economy is on the up and as it rises, rents are on the up and the places that stepped up and created something beautiful during the hard times, are now the places to be pushed out in favour of office space and increased opportunities to make money. Init was my home studio for three years; it was the place I travelled back from London to, to teach my first Irish workshops in early 2014 when they launched Power Vinyasa Yoga; it was the place that gave me a ready made community to slot into when I moved to Ireland at the end of 2014 and it was the space where I led my first of four teacher trainings. It provided me with a home, a family of yogis and countless devoted students who came every day to practice. At the last count they have had 10,000 students through their doors and, to my knowledge, it has been the largest yoga studio space in the country. To hear it was closing broke my heart and not just for the owners but also for the community of people who have flowed and breathed together as one over the years. It made me question my values and what I am committed to creating in my life and how my impact is on the world around me.
Community has been a huge part of my yoga journey and was one of the main reasons I took the leap from the corporate world to the yoga world many years ago. From my early days with Power Living in Sydney to the later days at Hot Power Yoga and Lumi Power Yoga in London, I have learned that community is at the heart of a thriving yoga business. The stronger your community, the more abundance you attract in. And the abundance since that email went to students has been overwhelming for Jeanne and the team at Init. Support has come from all angles and keeps flowing in. While they don’t have a solution right now, it will come in time. For me, the email pushed me to take a risk and get into action on creating the vision I set ten years ago while doing my first teacher training.
So I am leaving life in Dublin for life on the West Coast, in an infinitely smaller community. I am trusting in the flow of what has shown up in the last month and I am taking a leap into the unknown. It feels right and I feel ready.
And so while it’s been an exhilarating month in a lot of ways with new opportunities and possibilities knocking on my door, it has also been one with lots of transition.
“Some periods of our growth are so confusing that we don’t even recognize that growth is happening. We may feel hostile or angry or weepy and hysterical, or we may feel depressed. It would never occur to us, unless we stumbled on a book or a person who explained to us, that we were in fact in the process of change, of actually becoming larger spiritually, than we were before. Whenever we grow, we tend to feel it, as a young seed must feel the weight and inertia of the earth as it seeks to break out of its shell on its way to becoming a plant. Often the feeling is anything but pleasant. But what is most unpleasant is the not knowing what is happening. Those long periods when something inside ourselves seems to be waiting, holding its breath, unsure about what the next step should be, eventually become the periods we wait for, for it is in those periods that we realize that we are being prepared for the next phase of our life and that, in all probability, a new level of the personality is about to be revealed.”
Alice Walker, Living by the Word
How we cope with transition is interesting to witness. My action this month as been to feel the feelings, allow the tears to flow, the sadness and the anger to be felt and also to see the bittersweet beauty of what can come out of a transition. In Init’s case a lot of the community coming together to work on what could be created out of this and a celebration of what was. There is more for them to do in this city and I am excited to see what they create together. For me, it is stepping into a life I have been preparing for for a while and building a home by the coast. I don’t really know what the road ahead will bring but I do know that for the first time in my life it feels as though I have chosen this and it has chosen me. There was no force and no trying to control it. It happened and it happened beautifully and for this I am grateful.
So as we step towards a changing date and into another year is there a risk you've wanted to take but keep putting off...
"Whatever you are meant to do, do it now, the conditions are always impossible".
And remember, if not now when? If not you, who?