“I feel happy and they all feel happy being there, so they make me happy and I make them happy. We just spend a little happy time together, that’s all.”1 That’s how Swami Satchidananda describes giving a dharma talk, sharing yoga, and essentially – what yoga is. Happy times.
Last week I subbed a Restorative Yoga class. Teaching restored my own energy, my sense of self, my connection with the Divine. The most beautiful thing about teaching for me is feeling peace and joy resonating from the students. That’s the whole point to me. And in turn I receive and emit that energy as well.
While teaching may seem like giving (and it is) I get so much in return that I’m thankful for the opportunity to serve even when it feels like I have nothing more to give. Teaching nourishes me, lets me practice, and reconnects me to what is important.
As a mom my priority is always my son but lately I’ve been running on empty. The years of sacrifice and giving have drained me and even my son recognizes that I’m not the same person. “I have two mommies, is the other one coming tomorrow?” He may mean something completely different in his 2 ¾ year old mind – but it breaks my heart anyway.
I took the time this weekend to be alone, to be quiet, to be slow. I smelled the newly sprung flowers, lay in the sunshine and stared up at puffy clouds forming and reforming in the bright blue sky above. Those moments, while short in the big picture, melted away long held tension. I felt like me for a moment again.
I watched bees discover blossoms and nestle inside. Bees take nectar for themselves and in turn give pollen and help create more flowers, more nectar, and more life. Taking enough to keep yourself going is necessary when it prepares you to have more to give. Sometimes we forget that we need to take sometimes, we need to take care of ourselves in order to take care of others, we need some nectar to sweeten our lives in order to create more sweetness in the world.
Yoga gives me a little happy time to remember that sweetness.
1 Satchidananda, Swami, The Yoga Sutras of Patanjali/translation and commentary by Swami Satchidananda, Integral Yoga Publications, Yogaville, 1990. Book 1 Sutra 15