Thursday, May 13, 2010

this ain't no picnic

Morning: teaching. I slept terribly last night, with no desire to teach or interact with humans before noon. My eyes struggled to open, but when they did I could see plenty of sun and blue sky. I did what I could to fight my way out of bed, assuming I'd probably have a small class on such a gorgeous morning.

Instead I found five students on the patio by 8:25. Apparently the sun roused everyone in town but me. The energy in the room ran so high from minute one. I worried that I'd be unable to keep up or inspire. On top of my fatigue, I discovered that the clock in the studio somehow broke.

One of my regulars brought me a gallon of home-brewed kombucha. I needed that.

20 students total in the morning class. My tired ass taught without a clock, and still managed to finish with three minutes to spare. By the time I got students into Ardha Matyendrasana I was ready to kick the day right in the babymaker. Yeah, sometimes my job rules. One student told me she felt the flow of the class was better than ever. Imagine that.

Afternoon: practice. I arrive at the studio to learn that my scheduled instructor tried to reach me so I could cover her class. *sigh* I accepted the possibility of missing a practice. We secretly wished for no one to arrive. Sounds terrible, but if no one shows up I could practice on my own. Or if regulars arrive I can lead them in a silent class, and let my instructor take care of her personal business.

Always take care when making wishes.

One of my favorite regulars arrives, and we discuss our collective desire for a silent class. Then a new student walks in the door. Honestly it's good to have more business, so I accept this new turn of events and prepare for class. Apparently said newbie will have another friend joining her. Because of the triumphant arrival of spring, we have very few folks in class. It's me, my favorite regular, another woman with a great practice, and three new students.

This was one of my hardest practices. Once upon a time I preferred smaller classes so we'd have plenty of personal space. Now a small class proves challenging. When you're leading it, you're essentially carrying everyone along in their practice. It works well when it's a small group of regulars. Sometimes you can turn it into a mini-clinic, or take chances to make deeper corrections. A small class with a lot of new students is another matter altogether. New students rely on regulars to show them the way, literally and figuratively. I knew I had three pairs of eyes watching me through my practice. I had to represent. No rest for the wicked.

I realized that I am still an asshole after all this practice. I couldn't find enough compassion for my instructor and her issues. I had to remember my first Bikram class and how much I struggled and fought so I wouldn't get frustrated at my newbies. This trying to make yourself better with practice shit is hard. Maybe I have to let go of trying to be better, or at least better for other people. The goal is just as much an attachment as anything else.

I imagine my full day will lead to a restful night. I need all the sleep I can get, considering I have a weekend full of teaching doubles on my horizon.

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