i am back in Belize, enjoying the sun, sea, laughter, and beauty that is my home here.
Every day i wake up here and give thanks for this place that has welcomed me home. i have been so embraced by the community, that i get asked to go to funerals and weddings of people i do not even know. That is just how it goes here in this village–once you are connected in, it is all about community.
i did my best when i first came here to keep the public side of who i am hidden– not because i am ashamed of who i am, but because i wanted to just be another person in the community. Over time, people have figured it out and now much of the community knows that “the girl who lived in the tree” is now the same girl who lives in the village.
The beautiful part though is that people got to know me as just another person who moved in, but was doing what i could to make the community and place even better. Helping out on various projects and even, unexpectedly, becoming a yoga teacher.
Someone came up to me one night and asked, “Do you do yoga?” i replied. “Yes!” excited because i thought maybe someone was opening up a yoga studio in town (i had heard rumors of it.) She said, “I thought you do; you look like you do. We need a yoga instructor; will you teach us yoga?”
i started laughing and told her, “i do not lead yoga professionally; i just have my own practice.”
“We don’t care. We just need someone to lead us. Please, will you lead us in yoga?” she asked.
i told her that i would be happy to give it a try to see if i could support them in that way, but that if they did not like my style, they needed to let me know, so i wouldn’t have my feelings hurt by people just disappearing on me.
That was almost 4 months ago now, with a break in between while i was gone on tour. i returned from tour only to find even more people asking for yoga. i am now leading 12 yoga classes a week! Working with beginners and up to people with more experienced yoga practices.
It is so beautiful to watch and support people’s process and to see the sweet community beginning to build around it. All of my classes are donation based, no one is turned away for having no money; people who can, give; people who can not still come and receive the benefits and blessings of the practice. Local businesses have opened up space for free for us to practice and one couple even allowed us to use their home while they were away.
It is so in my nature to serve and to give. It brings so much joy to me and activates my purpose. i had a few yoga instructor friends over time tell me i should be a yoga instructor, and i always laughed and said that was not my calling. Well, it wasn’t my calling, but others called out and asked it from me, and now, here i am leading yoga.
As with everything i do in my life, i incorporate my commitments of caring for the Earth, caring for ourselves and one another, and exploring how the gifts of the yoga practice on the mat translate into making a difference in our own lives and the world around us. i feel so blessed by this unfolding process.
i am now facing another choice around living situation. The house i have been living is not the right home for me long-term and needs a lot more work on it than i am willing to invest in some one else’s place. i have not found another place in the village the meets my needs (space, affordability, near the sea, and secure– sadly there are a lot of robberies where i live.) i have completely fallen in love with my ever-growing community here, and the thought of leaving is hard for me. At the same time, i have been dating someone for 6 months now who lives in the north of Belize (i live in the south) and so it feels like since i can’t find the right place here; i will go try out living in the north. It is beautiful there. Both places have plus and minuses about them. i feel a little torn about the choice. i am trusting the yoga of life practice to help guide me. i am going to move to the north for a while to experience living there. i will see if i am able to find community there like i have here. i will stretch into it and breathe and see what opens up; trusting that clarity and growth will emerge in the process. Yoga and life are not about the destination. They are about the journey into the ever-expanding present moment; the exploration of mind, body, heart, spirit, world, and planet. Letting go of attachments to outcomes and results. Giving ourselves fully and showing up with presence and commitment, and then surrendering to the flow, the breath, the journey that is life.
Here’s to all of us showing up committed with presence and then getting out of our own way. Life is juicier and yummier there.
Blessings on your journey wherever it leads.