Imbalance and Imperfection: tales of a real yogi.


18 years ago this month, I was attacked by a camel. A man I hardly knew pulled the 1600 pound beast off of me and saved my life. Years later, that man would become my husband, but this is not a love story. By the time he rescued me, my pelvis was broken, my right hip was severely dislocated and the femur was broken, I had several bruised and cracked ribs and soft tissue damage in my spine. I was lucky to be alive and had a long road to recovery ahead of me. The orthopedist informed me that I would have chronic arthritis in my right hip, I would most likely walk with a limp and/or cane throughout my life, and my hip would repeatedly dislocate until I would need a complete hip replacement from the wear and tear. Because I am hard headed, I refused the surgery that he recommended at the time AND refused his predictions. Today, I am pain free because of my daily practice on the mat! The hip has not dislocated again, I do not walk with a limp and have never used a cane! However, my two hips are very different and require different negotiations both on and off of the mat. Here is a snippet from my morning practice. This is not a Yoga Journal video. There is no make up, jewelry or fancy lululemons. No retakes. This is an untouched video of a real woman, real sweat, and real negotiations with what I affectionately refer to as “the camel hip.” Today, negotiations were tough, and you can really see the difference in my two sides. When I find that the camel hip is cranky, I am extra sweet and respectful to it. I never push or call it my “bad hip.” I ask nicely, “What are you capable of today?” and then listen carefully to the answer. You can also see at the beginning of the video, I get a little too greedy with my backbend and have to take a step back and try again, a little less impetuous, just like I do in life sometimes. This is my daily practice of self-study and observation. It’s all a negotiation!

Music: Wah, Gayatri (Luscious Chill Mix)

Love and Peace to you,

Steph

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