• Vanity vs Sanity

  • They come for the vanity and stay for the sanity.

    ~Dr. Sara Gottfried on women and yoga

     

    I read this quote in the SF Chronicle a while ago and it reminded me of myself back when I started Yoga. It was a year after Ian was born (I am not counting my forays into prenatal yoga, in retrospect that was a BAD class) and six months after I'd left my entire family behind to move to a different continent with my husband and baby. Not an easy baby, by the way. I still had a ton of baby weight to lose. The stress of baby and move was taking a toll on my marriage.

    I've always hated aerobics type classes and Pilates was killing my back, so I tried Yoga at the gym. I remember my back started getting tired 30 seconds into Easy Pose because I wasn't used to sitting up straight and I remember falling flat on my face when going from Plank Pose into Crocodile. Every single time. In Forward Bend my hands wouldn't go past my knees. All in all it was quite a miserable experience. But when I walked out of that class, I felt more balanced and peaceful than I'd had since my baby was born. I was amazed. So I had to come back and it turned out it wasn't a fluke. I felt better after class every single time, even after classes where an hour seemed to last a day. Soon I was going twice a week, then 3 times and 4 when I could fit it in.

    Yoga changed the way I looked at myself, the way I looked at my life. It inserted a dose of peacefulness and, yes, sanity, that helped me cope with the chaos that life with Ian and in the US turned out to be. Yes, I lost the baby weight, but honestly, if it had not done a thing for my body I wouldn't have cared. I shudder to think about what kind of person I would have become without the Yoga to keep me sane.

     

     Fist posted in October 2011