I think about these last two weeks in India and I get emotional thinking about how incredibly lucky I am to have had such amazing souls by my side, sharing every single experience with me. I think about my Krishna/Surya family and how similar we all are and how we were all looking for the same answers. I think about what I have learned in these past few weeks, even the first 4 weeks of just travelling India and getting to know It inside and out. I think about how this experience alone changed my attitude, changed my perception of the world and ultimately helped me grow as a person. I’ve always said that you learn so much more from travelling than you ever do from studying and I believe that the school of life is the best school in history. There are things you can’t be taught, things that just come to you when you’re ready and ultimately shine a light on everything you ever questioned. Yoga for me is this. These last 6 weeks were indescribable and so I won’t attempt to decipher my experiences but instead hold on to them and thank the universe for providing me with these opportunities. As I said in my orientation speech on Day 1 in Rishikesh Yog Peeth, I came to study to be a yoga teacher with no expectations and I believed that , that whatever will be will be, that is the joy of it. I truly had no expectations but I had a slight nervousness that I may not believe in myself and my abilities and consequently quit early on. One thing I have learned is that I am more capable than I ever imagined, even managing to do a headstand at the end of the course- something that seemed impossible to me prior to this. I learned about myself from the inside out and believe that I am starting to understand myself more now. It’s very true when they say that you give what you get, that when you are nice to someone they are nice to you and that this ultimately leads to a happy life. I have opened my heart over the past 6 weeks and I have no regrets. I have gained so much love and friendship from all corners of the globe and at the end of it all… A yoga teacher training certificate. My determination, ambition and dreams have come true and I have no worries about creating more dreams to follow.
The last two weeks involved a lot of lesson planning, assignment work and chats in Kanaan in between, without forgetting one last trip to the Beatles ashram. After picking names out of a hat, we were paired together to create a 2 hour yoga class which we had been assigned to do on specific days of the last week. I got Wednesday evening from 5pm until 7pm which funnily enough I had wanted, and was paired with my fellow yogi Eva. We prepared our plans and during the few days prior to our class, we spent a lot of time practising and making changes, using other yogi’s as our students. The start of my class, took me to my 7th hour of yoga practice and ultimately my 8th for that day which was a record for me, but which only made me more determined. Teaching that class was one of the best feelings of my life and I felt like I could stay up there and talk all night. It seemed at that moment that Eva and I had the perfect combination and when the class ended and our students were in Shivasana listening to ‘Omkara-Remember’, we couldn’t help but look and smile at each other with pride and slight relief. I couldn’t have received better comments and support from my students and teachers that evening and It only made me more excited to go out into the big world and do it all over again. It goes without saying that all of the other student teachers were incredible and It just showed how different we all are and how much imagination and individual skills we all have. By the end of the week, finishing with Melissa’s evening class, we were all so excited, proud and once again slightly relieved to be finished. We were all on a high from the incredible support and feedback and we were even more excited about the graduation.
We had said from the beginning that we would wear Sari’s to our ceremony and so week by week, more and more of us began to get prepared. On our last day, which was Saturday, we had a yoga class/photo-shoot at the Ganga River, all wearing our Rishikesh Yog Peeth matching t-shirts. Needless to say, not much yoga was done but instead we ran around taking pictures and manoeuvring into crazy group postures. After the giggles and fun, we headed back to our respective hotels and went our separate ways until the ceremony in the afternoon. Some of us slept, some went out to lunch (I opted out, afraid that my blouse may burst open that night haha) and some just chilled out but it wasn’t before long that my room became a beauty parlour. The déjà vu I felt that day, from nights out at home, getting ready together was great, but this time it was a different energy all together. It was beautiful. We were beautiful. With all the girls packed into my room, we curled hair, did make up, wrapped Sari’s, borrowed jewellery and did the finishing touches before we all set off to Surya Palace for the big event. Arriving, to see everyone looking stunning and handsome, we took our respective seats on the floor and faced towards the prayer ceremony, the same one we had begun our orientation with. After this, we took a break (photo break of course) and after about 45 minutes of crazy photography, we went back in and sat facing the traditional Indian band who were set up to play. The energy was electric and we had such fun, even when the power went and they carried on. We danced and mingled on the rooftop before heading back in for the certification ceremony. Disappointed by the absence of Roshan, who seemed to be present at every other event or ceremony, we looked around awaiting his arrival. Just before the ceremony began, he arrived, which made us happy but didn’t seem to erase the disappointment or questioning. Nevertheless, one by one we were called up to receive our awards, followed by the support in the form of loud claps, whistles and beautiful loving smiles. That was such an amazing night, one that we will never forget. It ended with an amazing dinner of Paneer curry(our favourite) salad and veg biryani, followed by chai in Kanaan and the departure of a few of our crew leaving for their flights. It became real in Kanaan that night, that this was the end of an incredible era, but with the tears looming and the hugs getting stronger, It also became obvious that this wasn’t going to be easy for anyone. The next morning half of the group were to leave to go to Delhi/Agra and so, after Kanaan we spent hours, just wandering from room to room watching them pack, not wanting to leave them. At around 1am I went to bed but by 4am, with the sound of footsteps outside, It became real to me that I would wake up and my friends would be gone. I started to get a horrible anxious, worried, sad feeling which ultimately made me violently ill for the whole morning. I figured if I couldn’t cry, something was going to happen wither way and this was it. As my stomach slowly killed me, I tried to sleep a bit more and forget what was happening, eventually waking up to go to laughing yoga with Susie and Raine. Something I didn’t feel In the mood for but felt could benefit me a lot. The class itself didn’t but the after chat about it certainly did. It was an experience to say the least but here I was in a packed class, roaring like a lion to surrounding strangers, skipping around the Hare Krishna and forcefully laughing like a lunatic. The only thing that genuinely made me laugh was the image of my friends at home seeing me doing this. I guess doing these things isn’t so bad when you know you won’t see these people again, but In my case, my neighbour happened to be in Deli airport checking in beside me for the same flight to Colombo. Mortified to be me!
I tried not to make this a super blog, but Its hard when you have so much to look back on and be thankful for. As I sit here in Delhi airport about to set off on a plane to Colombo and eventually Kuala Lumpur, I reflect on my memories, the people I was so lucky to meet and the overall experience of these last ten weeks in this incredible country and I wish each and every one nothing but the best for the future, no matter what is on the horizon for us. Each and everybody I have met have played a part in completing this journey for me and I will never forget that. I will look back on these events, with a firm smile on my relaxed face and a glint in my eye.
Namaste India I will be back x