Yoga and tatoos

I went to a yoga class recently in Washington D.C. I don't live there, but I was visiting and on the visit I had some time to myself and decided to take a yoga class. I went to Quiet Mind Yoga (great space) and took a class from Holly Meyers (great teacher). At the beginning of class Holly introduced herself to all of us and one of the things she said is that she recently wrote a blog called "The Yoga of Getting Tattoos". She said she wrote this blog because she was feeling sort of sorry for herself and she wanted things to happen in her life like. now. and it wasn't happening and that had her frustrated so she got a tattoo.

She said she got a tattoo because getting a tattoo is a lesson in patience. It's a lesson in having to wait for something you want to come to fruition and it's a lesson in having something start out ugly and become beautiful. And while one of the things I like most about going to yoga is the exercise, what I enjoy even more is listening to what each yogi has to teach and share.

Truth be told, it's what the teachers say that stays with me even more than the exercise itself. And one of the mental exercises I do with my yoga teachers is to automatically put them on a pedestal. So the thing that surprised and touched me most was the ordinary humanity Holly showed. She is a teacher and she had wonderful things to describe during the practice, but the sharing of her frustration was an honor. As a guest in her studio, I appreciated the opportunity to be let in, not just to the class, but to a glimpse of her real life.

Many times I look at people I know or people I meet and I imagine how perfect their life must be. How they must be happy and delighted and fulfilled each day in ways I wish for and imagine. And then I remember that people once thought that of me and my marriage, and the truth was far from everything being perfect. We weren't right for each other, but from the outside in, no one could see that, and for a while, we couldn't see it ourselves.

So maybe one thing we need to do is to remind ourselves that everyone has their own challenges and trepidations. Everyone has something to struggle with or against. Everyone has their own demons. And while it is easy to look at people and put them on pedestals, maybe the best thing to do is to resist that urge; to instead realize that they are just like us with joy and sorrow in their life or in their past. Maybe the thing to do is to give a silent thanks for meeting them and give a blessing directed to them right from where you are to right where they are as well. And maybe in that moment we can understand that we are all perfect and flawed, and honor each other for being just so.

After all, this is the life.


  1. Allison. What an honor, thank you. You have me bawling my eyes out over here! Sometimes teachers have no idea how - or IF - we reach students. And you have completely reinforced not only my but all teachers' authenticity with this post. Thank you for giving me permission to be me, to teach how I teach, to have faith that I am doing the right thing, and to be grateful that my journey led me to teach. I'll bet you had no idea how/if YOUR blog would reach ME! THANK YOU. OM Shanti. h*

  2. Allison, our words and actions are often far-reaching, and we don't always realize it.


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