Today is an anniversary that I would love not to have to remember. Three years ago I had an accident in the ocean that brought, as a consequence, a chronic injury in my legs.
Pain is relative. For the first few days, when I did not know yet the gravity of the injury, pain was very intense, but it was only physical pain. I do not mean physical pain is not important, but for me it is easier to stand a pain you know is temporary. The true pain came with the full diagnostic: the hamstring tendon was removed from the attachment at the sitzbone. Not only that. The muscles themselves were broken in different places. There was an option of surgery but not fully recommended by my doctor. I was in hell for days. We are never ready for sudden intense changes, and especially if those are in our bodies. Now there was the possibility for pain not being temporary. The uncertainty about my life as a yoga teacher and a surf lover. The difficult decision about a possible surgery without having clarity about the future consequences.
In those days I learn there is only one medicine for hell:
surrender to a higher power
Never in my life I have felt so grateful for all my years of yoga practice, for all my teachers.
Not only for the healing power of the practice at a physical level but, above all, by the trust in the Universe worked out for years, day by day.
In the middle of suffering I was feeling fully a yogini transiting the way of awakening .
I have also learnt that what I am more than what I look like or what I am able to do. To feel “broken” is very strange. I touched a place of great vulnerability where I was not feeling full, whole. Who am I truly if suddenly I cannot do all the things that so well defined me? After an event that de-structures you, a new identity is formed. On one hand, I do not want to feel limited by my injury nor to identify with it. On the other hand, and although normally I do not feel pain and have a pretty active life, every movement I do with my body reminds me that is not as it used to be before.
So I have also learnt to live inside my body in a deeper, more connected way. There is the healthy fear of hurting myself if I force too much, and sometimes I still can feel the trauma stored in the tissue, even after infinite treatments and therapies. So I am in a state of permanent listening. I am in awe about the body regeneration capacity. About the life intelligence that finds new neural pathways. About how the body tissues respond to love and awareness. Yes. I have treated my body with incredible love. And my body has responded showing me all the things I can do even feeling broken.
In truth, aren’t all we broken in some way?
On the past days, I was contemplating how physical injuries are more apparent, but truly, our emocional and physical wounds are much deeper and painfu. Yoga practices aim to heal ourselves at all levels. The process is both beautiful and intense, Beautiful and intense. Beautiful and intense. The dance consist of building strength to face the intensity and cultivating sensitivity to savour the beauty.
Today I want to celebrate my body. I want to celebrate myself. I want to celebrate yoga. And, especially, I want to renovate the commitments to love myself fully. To love my body even more as I am ageing. To love and accept myself unconditionally, with my physical and emotional wounds.
I leave you with a video that reflects my progress in one of my favourite asanas. I do not have much attachments to particular yoga poses themselves, but Natarajasana is very dear to me for many reasons. After the accident, I created a vision board and I put a picture of myself performing Natarajasana. Like an unreachable dream…
The video is two years and a half later, I did not put my focus of the practice in this asana, but in healing my body, with care and intelligent alignment. With love the body opens, And advanced asanas blossom… or they don’t´. It is not the most important.
It is a dance and we learn to move with the rhythm,