January 11, 2010

Making the Kool Aid

An unexpected weekend in the yoga studio. I was planning to show up for the inaugural weekend of the 2010 teacher training - at a minimum practice with the trainees at the start of each day, or perhaps assist at the practices. But my teacher / friend Nykki was drawn away by a family crisis, so I ended up hanging out throughout the teacher training weekend. I can safely report that the teacher training days did not get any shorter since I went through the training in 2008.....

It was an incredibly rewarding weekend. Several of my students, or folks I know from the studio, were in the class and it was great to see them taking the first steps into teaching - I felt a certain sense of maternal pride and protectiveness. As always it was amazing to be working with Barb, Peter, Shankara, Nykki, and Kristen. I assisted in three long practices - and that's always a treat - it's hard to really do a lot of hands on assisting in the midst of teaching. And the entire training program is so amazing - just a real honor to be able to witness the entire weekend...

My own yoga (practice and teaching) was reinvigorated through the weekend, as I sat through the lectures and workshops - a lot of the food and healthy eating stuff was good for my current weight loss project. And it was so exciting to watch the "firsts" as the trainees taught their first posture, struggled with lefts and rights, and put the hands on another body, perhaps for the first time. They are an amazing group....

Finally, it was somewhat reassuring, or perhaps gratifying, to have the trainees seek me out with questions, or advice. I felt pretty secure in my knowledge, and at times felt like I had some knowledge (different assists, languaging, or experience with certain types of students) to add to the training. Sometimes its difficult for me to recognize my own teaching skills, my own experience, and to think "what the heck am I doing here?". But to have trainees seek me out in the room with questions, to be able to communicate a posture or assist in a way that they were able to connect to - pretty sweet.

Next month, no doubt Nykki will be back at the front of the room (the hours she was able to participate, one could see the room energy shift and her light brighten the training) and I will step back to a more background or part time role. I feel a little sad about that; triggers my "on the outside looking in" stuff. Even last night, I sat in the back of the room and became a little less visible - as the staff clicked into their comfortable roles and I felt a little like a 5th wheel. But it was really sweet to be part of this weekend, to be considered worthy of stepping up into this role. Even though it was a tiring few days, it was pretty amazing to be there.

As my friend Alison once said as I confessed "I guess I drank the Kool Aid" vis a vis yoga. "Jude, you are making the Kool Aid these days....." Smart woman, that Alison.

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