surviving shavasana…


yoga yenta

There’s something going around.

Today in yoga class, the woman to my left repeatedly blew her nose into her hand towel. Barf. Although obviously contagious, she huffed and puffed so heavily upon my back during Half Moon pose that the entire row was in danger of blowing over. Soon thereafter, I heard sneezes from the right. The challenge of non-inhalation while bound and twisted became a Prana-less act of self preservation, almost as bad as that time I got the last spot next to B.O. boy. By the end of class, there was a symphony of sporadic coughs from the newly infected yogis around the room. Why was I not feeling very relaxed?

While mentally assessing my risks of contracting bird flu during Crow or Pigeon, I suddenly realized that yoga is practically the most hazardous activity I engage in. In addition to the obvious threats of self-inflicted injury, most yoga classes are purposely held in ventilation-deprived rooms, packed with sweaty barefoot strangers breathing deeply all over each other. Other than public yoga classes, I have little chance of becoming infected by a communicable virus, most of which are transmitted primarily by school-age children (don’t have any), in offices (don’t work at one), and on airplanes (I fly only peanut-free).

But if there is one thing I’ve learned from yoga, it’s not to let fear get in the way of what I love. And I really love yoga – my teachers, the group energy, not to mention the hottest eye candy in town. So I concentrate on shifting my focus to positive thoughts. I meditate upon a bright ring of white light, love (and Airborne) encircling the planet protectively.

Just to be safe, however, I get to work on upgrading my emergency kit to include items not only for earthquakes and terrorism, but for a global pandemic as well. (Hey, a girl’s gotta be prepared!). Documents stored on flash memory drives. Extra water bottles delivered. Plastic bins filled with battery-operated television and radio, mini grill, superyummy canned/dehydrated food and gummy worms. First-aid kit supplemented with Tamiflu, Cipro, Z-pack and Epipens (and perhaps a little Vicoden while we’re being thorough).

And, of course, I cannot forget my yoga mat, assorted array of props, incense and favorite instructional and Kirtan tapes. I’m suddenly excited about finally cultivating a home practice. Isn’t preparedness fun? But what if my garage is destroyed? What if “IT” happens when I’m out of town? What if my toenail polish chips in the mayhem?

As I panic to protect myself from these unlimited imagined catastrophes, I consider the possibility that the most important item I need might not fit into a waterproof bin. It’s the yoga within – my ability to find peace and well-being by acknowledging my fears and then letting them go. But in the meantime, thank the lord for Emergen-C.

Om Shanti & Infinite gratitude,
Yoga Yenta

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