My neighbor and friend Angie recently began teaching yoga at a local studio at a remarkably affordable cost, so today after avoiding it for months I finally gave it a whirl. Angie is tiny and cute and kind of looks like the woman in this picture when she does yoga. I do not look like the woman in this picture when I do yoga. Although we barely moved during the entire hour, I lost about six pounds from sweating so profusely, and I'm pretty sure my downward dog pose really looked like a dog, which I don't believe it's really supposed to. My arms quivered and my feet ached and my hips never pointed in the correct direction, no matter how Angie attempted to fix them. I am an official yoga train wreck.
Actually, I was really good at one part. At the end of class we just laid on the floor and relaxed. Angie put a soft little lavender-filled pillow over my eyes that both blocked out the light and filled my olfactory senses with a delicate floral scent that was immediately calming. Then, in a soft voice, she told me to think of a time when I was very happy and when everything felt good. She told me to think about how I felt, both in mind and body, during those wonderful moments. It was so easy to be laying there, smelling the fragrant lavender and thinking about bobbing around with friends and family in the gently rolling, late afternoon waves of the Pacific Ocean at Playa Ventura, the sun slowly drifting lower in the azure sky, golden rays glinting off the water like a million diamonds all around us. I could not have been more relaxed unless I was actually floating in the sea at that minute.
Now I just have to work on those agonizing fifty-five minutes of yoga that occur before the relaxing cool down.