I came to my yoga practice after years of binge eating, years of struggling with confidence, years of gaining and losing weight in bouts of depression and anxiety, and crazed attempts to find a little peace.
I hit a point in my life sometime early on in college where I was both my heaviest at about 300 pounds, and my unhappiest. I thought the two went hand in hand, so I started hitting the gym in hopes to make a permanent change. Significant weight loss and loads of empty compliments later, I realized that absolutely nothing had changed. My physical body changed, but my body changes every single day and always will. I was still me, I brought myself and all of my habits and tendencies and fears with me to my "new" body.
So I came to yoga as a last resort. I was unknowingly searching for something, and I think ultimately that thing was peace. Peace and freedom that eventually came from a place of self worth. I remember my first class well. I walked in having the largest body in the room on top of being the beginner, and yoga was hard. I couldn't hold down dog for 5 breaths, my shoulders were on fire, and all the while it seemed everybody else was popping up into optional headstands like it was no big deal. I remember thinking that would never and could never be me. I thought my body would limit my practice, but eventually I learned that only my mind sets limits.
Many people think they need to be thin, flexible, or strong to practice yoga. Please, hear me when I say that yoga is for everybody. Bodies change and evolve every single day, and the physical practice is simply a manifestation of the internal change. Yoga is a spiritual practice, one that allows you to be and see yourself. It's a practice of non-attachment. Your physical body isn't a deciding factor in whether or not yoga is for you. Your body changes. There's nothing to be attached to that won't leave you hurting or feeling empty down the road. Come to yoga to find out how you feel, not judge how you look. We do enough of that anyway. Give yourself a chance, give yourself the gift of knowing your worth and it will change your life.
Love and light to all of you beautiful people,