My journey from yoga newbie to Bikram Yoga teacher: from San Francisco, to Los Angeles, to Cleveland, to Pittsburgh, to Harrisonburg, and beyond!
Friday, October 11, 2013
It's Only Goodbye for Now...
So I don't read my horoscope much...but one particular day in late September, I happened to check it out. And here is what it said: Standing at the edge of a new experience is a reassuring feeling for you Rams. You might even begin an extremely exciting venture now, for you have an optimistic sense about life and you are eager to play out your part. Be as adventurous as you wish. Live outside the constraints of negativity and reach for the stars.
Why so shocked, Keanu? Because that very day I had been offered an amazing job in a small town in Virginia. So I decided to take it, and I'll be leaving my beloved Pittsburgh (and even more beloved studio) on October 26th.
I hadn't intended to leave so soon - while I started toying with the idea of getting back into fundraising, I wasn't applying to anything, I just wanted to see what was out there. But when a great job at the American Shakespeare Center landed in my email inbox, all signs pointed to YES. - A neat organization with a beautiful space, an engaging mission, fantastic leadership, and so much potential for growth? CHECK. - An area with a surprising focus on farm-to-table cuisine, organics, and sustainability - in fact, the farm featured in one of my favorite food-related books, Omnivore's Dilemma, only seven miles away? CHECK. - The beautiful mountains and landscape of the Shenandoah Valley? New life experiences for Danielle? CHECK.
- Astonishing low cost of living? CHECK. - And of course...a gorgeous Bikram Yoga studio, owned by my fellow Spring 2011 trainee and all around awesome person Kendall, a mere half hour away? CHECK. I felt a bit like Jeff from that strange, sweet movie Jeff Who Lives At Home (except, y'know, not living at home. And maybe a little less scruffy. Just not by much.)
When the cute little coffee shop next to my new workplace played my current favorite (and relatively obscure) song while the barista made me a perfect soy latte and sang the praises of little Staunton, VA...I was sold. But...
Bikram Yoga Pittsburgh isn't just a workplace...it's been my favorite place, with my favorite people, for over two years now. I've watched students grow and change and thrive and been thrilled and delighted to share their beautiful journeys. I've learned so much as a teacher, a student, and a yoga practitioner, from my mentor Zeb and from all the teachers here. Not only is my spine more bendy but my heart is more open. When I graduated teacher training, if you had told me I would move back to Pittsburgh...
I was going to teach on a little island in Thailand or get my Australian visa or SOMETHING other than...Pittsburgh. But little did I know, Pittsburgh, and all the people in it, would provide some of the most special and illuminating years of my life. Last but not least...it's not goodbye forever, just goodbye for now. Who knows what the future may hold? Cheesy Sondheim song anyone? No? This is probably more appropriate.