Embodied Connections: The relationship between an individual’s mind and spirit and how it reveals it’s true self within the body.
My mission is to inspire curiosity, encourage self-discovery, and offer a space where a diverse community can connect and grow both individually and as a collective.
When I started this idea, of Embodied Connections I was one, just diagnosed with COVID and two finishing up my 200 hrs of Yoga Teacher Training. I was also working on my memior ... it's funny how motivated one can get when your in the middle of a global pandemic. I often reflect back in order to move forward, and looking back there have been two people in my life ask me two definitive questions that have helped define what I want and who I want to be.
One was when I was 21 years old, "I know you are learning a lot about God right now, and that makes me really happy, but are we ever going to talk about anything else?" Being young and on my own for the first time I was upset, felt judged and was offended; however, I allowed those emotions to motivate me to learn more scripture and more about God's character. Then, when I was 34 years young, someone asked me, "you know yoga doesn't have to be your whole life." This also made me feel a little judged and upset, but it was also a familiar feeling and it didn't sting as much. I recognized 13 years earlier, that I can use other people's opinions of me to motivate to learn more, but also to look within consider what resonate and let the rest go. Both in my faith walk as well as Yoga practice, these entities are a life long journey and a lifestyle choice, and I am a forever student.
"Since God chose you to be holy people he loves, you must clothe yourselves with tenderhearted mercy, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Make allowance for each other's faults and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember the Lord forgave you so you too must forgive others." Col. 3:12-13
This year has brought its challenges for sure but the transformation I have found is the realization in how deep and wide and unconditional God's love is for me and everyone else. I am a chosen one not because I read scripture, but because I have chosen to change the internal script that I speak to myself. By speaking kindly to my inner child I can truthfully and authentically extend this same love to others. The saying is true with food and your spiritual practices,
“You are on the outside what you put on the inside.”-Elder Dee
Yoga has been my spiritual practice that others see on the outside because of my spiritual reading and other books that have enlightened my heart. The light of the Holy Spirit can shine bright within, this light that creates joy and hope doesn't always make sense, but if we pause and notice the subtle miracles around us, like the sound of a baby laughing, or seeing an elderly couple holding hands through the parking lot of Walmart, or maybe that first sip of water on a really hot day. Those tiny little sparks, that bring a smile to you face, ignite joy which transcends to hope.
"Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds us all together in perfect harmony." Col.3:14
Finding this “perfect harmony” can seem unattainable, when you look at the whole world, but if you look back on your day and find one thing that brought you joy, you can start to find that harmony . I have a partner who supports me and is an active father in our son's lives. I have abstained from alcohol which has transformed my body into an active role in my life. I can ask it what my body wants and not be afraid of the feeling that may be triggered. Instead of my "go to" of suppressing past trauma with just one more glass of wine or maybe some Tennessee honey whiskey. I've been able to clear my calendar, cancel coffee dates, and have had the courage to say no to some toxic relationships, because I knew it was mentally healthy for me and my family.
"and let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts. As members of one body you are called to live in peace." Col.3:15
I have learned more about racism as the deadly sin that is weaved not only through American History, but throughout all of humanity. Oppression and systematic racism have become common household conversations as well as an open awareness of how powerful voices can be. I have sat with and acknowledged my own white privilege, set aside my own agenda for my own social platforms so more voices can be heard. I believe whole heartily that Jesus was against oppression and encouraged social justice for all, while he walked this earth, so as a Christ-follower I will do what I can to share in this same love for ALL people.
“And always be thankful.” Col 3:15
I am beyond thankful.
I am thankful for the ability to stay another year in Tennessee.
I am thankful to have bought this home.
I am thankful for our neighbors.
I am thankful for a family that values my self care, and doesn't hold my personal time against me, instead they encourage it, because they see how much better I can give love when my love tank is filled.
I am thankful for hearing my boys giggle upstairs playing games.
I am thankful for my husband who loves my body and sees my soul.
I am thankful for my friends both near and far.
I am thankful for my health, I know not everyone was so lucky to recover so quickly from COVID-19 this past year and I do not take this lightly.
I am thankful for keeping God’s word alive in my heart.
I am thankful for all the men and women who hold me and my family accountable for sharing in the Word of God, and their fellowship.
I am thankful for my Yoga practice and my mentors that continue to hold space for me.
I am thankful for that the passion I have to help other is now becoming a lifelong vocation
I am thankful for the next chapter of this journey.