Looking around nervously, I tugged my tank top down. I didn’t feel comfortable in my body once more. Am I too fat? Am I too bony? Why are my arms and legs bony but my hips as wide as the Ganges river? How can it be remotely possible for someone to have anorexic limbs but a belly that rivals a Sumo wrestler’s? How is it possible that I see my hip bones protruding out of my skin but I still have muffin tops? Can I eat dinner tonight? Am I allowed to feel full? Is eating bad for me-though I feel no hunger? Are my [nonexistent] boobs going to burst out of my tank top that’s already riding too low? I asked myself as I pulled it down once more.
I sighed again, internally this time. This is the mental hell I have to go through after not meditating/practicing for nearly a month.
I really, really, really am starting to dislike myself. Or my Self.
Taking a tentative step towards the podium, I began my little speech. “Start with Pranayama Deep Breathing…”. My students were getting into the zone. I was starting to get in to the zone as well. The familiarity of the Dialogue is back. I missed saying “Arms over your head sideways, hands palms together …” and the little idiosyncrasies that come with the dialogue.
I looked on in envy as my students attempted Standing Bow Pulling pose, one of my favourites to teach [and to practice]. My heart had a little twang of sadness to it as I saw everyone trying their darndest in Triangle and for a moment I felt absolutely sad by the end of teaching Spine Strengthening series, the class was about to end not for me, but for them.
I tried to remember what it was like to practice, what my last class was like before I fell ill [and was thus ‘banned’ from practicing]. Did I die in class? Did I absolutely love it? I tried to remember what it was like to stand up with a straight spine, to feel all the muscles in my body sigh and move along as I pulled, stretched and how wonderful a feeling it was when I managed to kick both legs in Bow [and saw my own 2 feet]. I tried recollecting the happiness and lightness I felt after every class, how I’d congratulate myself for improving just 1mm in Stretching pose [I know I’ll never get my forehead to my toes- be damned body proportions, but it’s worth a damn try till I’m 85!].
Every time I stepped in the hot room to teach, the feeling of familiarity just comes rushing back, like a long lost lover’s embrace. A little pool of sweat collecting in the small of my back, the trickle of sweat from my scalp all the way down my neck, my spine to legs feels strangely erotic yet comforting. My body felt happy once it was in the hot room, but yet felt strangely cheated that I didn’t do my required 26+2.
I can’t wait to practice again.