Author ACADEMIC. ACTIVIST. ARTIST. ASANA.
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I flew west last week to spend a little time on Stanford's campus. I had signed up months ago to attend a conference in the Bay Area—and got a cheap round-trip ticket that made it worthwhile. I scheduled appointments with my advisors—and a couple prospective advisors. I made plans to spend time with friends, visit a San Francisco museum and enjoy an afternoon (or two) at the beach. But the real reason I wanted to come west was to see how it felt.
Would I be happy or sad as I returned to campus?
Would I miss my life as a graduate student, or be eager to return to my life as a working gal?
Most of all, would I feel ready to return to finish my degree, or would I rather move on with my professional goals without the doctorate?
As in so many other things, my emotions and reactions were mixed. It was really nice to get around without my navigation system, making me feel like campus had become a familiar place (finally). I enjoyed reconnecting with friends and colleagues. Stanford itself was lovely, and the weather was pretty good for early spring. But toward the end of my weekend visit, I was really looking forward to getting on a plane and flying home.
I drove straight from the airport to my new DC sublet, and spent the rest of the week settling in. Over the next few months, I will be visiting with family, working, teaching yoga, doing some life coaching, attending church services, spending time with friends, completing my incomplete assignments from the fall quarter and trying to figure out if—and when—I return to Stanford to finish my studies.
I have decided to adopt the “take one day at a time” attitude. I know today that I want to be DC. I’m not sure what I will be feeling in April, June or August. But today, I know I have made the right choice to return home. I’ll figure out the future later.
I began practicing yoga in 2003 after I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease. I found great relief from my arthritis symptoms as I began to practice on a daily basis. I quickly decided that I wanted to share the benefits of yoga with others, especially low-income people, women of color, Christians and others who felt like their bodies weren’t made for yoga. I completed my initial teacher training ten years later in 2013—and took an introductory three-day training on teaching yoga for arthritis the next year. For many years, I was able to incorporate what I learned into my classes at Trinity Gym, where most of my students were retired senior citizens.
This spring, I am partnering with the Greater Brookland Intergenerational Village to offer two Therapeutic Yoga classes—incorporating some of the yoga for arthritis principles I have used before. Anyone of any age dealing with any sort of limitation or chronic condition is welcome to attend.
Dates: April 7 and 14
Time: 2:30 – 3:30pm
Location: Bluebird Sky Yoga
Address: 3101 12th St NE, Washington, DC 20017
Cost: $5 per class
I also am hoping to partner with the DC Road Runners Club to offer free Community Yoga on the Metropolitan Branch Trail for the fifth summer. The proceeds from the MBT 5K race are used to offset the cost of the fitness and yoga classes that we offer. This year’s race will be held Saturday, April 27. Be sure to sign up to support this community health initiative.
More details about the community yoga classes to follow. Check my website for updates.
I read The Artist Way four years ago, and it turned my world upside down. Instead of focusing exclusively on advancing in my professional career, I began to make time to play and pursue creative projects. I wrote three long-hand sheets of morning pages each day and took myself out on weekly artist dates. I visited museums, took writing classes, went to see independent films, attended concerts and operas, and treated myself to hundreds of mugs of chai tea with steamed almond milk.
As I nurtured my Inner Artist, creativity and energy spilled into other areas of my life. I decided to return to school and pursue my doctoral studies. But the demands of classes, work and research were intense—and my weekly artist dates were tossed to the side so I could find more time to read, think and write.
Since I have been on leave, I have resumed my weekly artist dates. In the first two months of 2019, I already have:
Being an Artist is a central part of my identity. Should I return to doctoral studies, I have to figure out a plan to keep it front and center in my life. I can’t let my academic pursuits outpace my artistic ones.
I am THRILLED to announce that I will be teaching several yoga classes this spring and summer:
Mondays, 7:15pm: Adult Vinyasa Yoga at THEARC, SE DC (April and May)
Wednesdays, 7pm: Yoga at Twists and Turns, NW DC (April through June)
Sundays, 2:30pm: Therapeutic Yoga at Bluebird Sky Yoga, NE DC (April 7 and 14)
In addition, I will be hosting an Awaken Your Soul Yoga workshop that combines yoga philosophy, asana and life coaching techniques:
Date: Saturday, March 23
Time: 3-5 pm
Location: Spiritual Essence Yoga
Address: 5020 Brown Station Road, Suite #130, Upper Marlboro, MD 20772