This is the story of an overly ambitious, incredibly energetic girl who just so happens to have a family history of heart disease. I would love nothing more than to tell you that this story ends with yoga healing this girl’s body and making all of her cardiovascular “weaknesses” go away. But that story would be a lie.
The truth is this yogini had high blood pressure at 14 years old. Yes I aid 14. I was a dancer, a cheerleader and a gymnast. I was 135 pounds and 5 foot 6 inches. I exercised two hours a day (cheering and dancing) but I ate like a …. Teenager.
And still living with an absent father buying her own groceries, and working her own side hustles for cash (babysitting and braiding hair) created enough stress to run my blood pressure up.
When life got more stable my blood pressure was normal. Meanwhile my father died of a heart attack at age 53.
Life and heart were fine, until marriage and family got tough. Husband never home traveling for work. Whispers of infidelity. Preschool aged and infant children. Blood pressure up!
It didn’t matter that I was a healthy organic eating (mostly) vegetarian. It didn’t matter that I meditated daily, did yoga four times a week and carido three times a week. It didn’t matter that I was 140 pounds and 5 foot 8 inches.
My heart didn’t’ care!
Why am I telling you this?
Because as much as I want to be a living testimony of yoga being my cure all it has not been for me. At least not in that simplistic way.
I have come to accept that a 25 mg dose of a beta blocker is what my heart required to bring my body back to balance (at least for now)
And this is where my real yoga practice steps in. Santosha is the yogic principle of accepting and being content with what is so, that you can make adjustment if need be.
I had to begrudgingly accept that diet, exercise, body weight, yoga, meditation and vegetarianism didn’t work for me.
I had to accept the shame I felt around being a “bad” yogini who couldn’t heal herself.
I had to accept OUTSIDE help for the health of my body!
And most importantly I had to accept that I was okay (and loveable) even though this wannabe all natural girl, had to reach out to modern medicine’s chemical fixes.
Santosha, and all the other yoga principles that we don’t often talk about in a gym or studio is HOW yoga changes our lives. Yamas. Niyamas. These are the real testimonial creators of yogis everywhere.
And I am grateful for them.
Love to you mama!
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