Years ago, I read an article that described how yoga friends are different than non-yoga friends. It went on to explain that yogis and yoginis have typically been through some tough s*#! in their lives and that the practice of yoga helps them process and persevere.
But to me, that’s only half of the story. I speak from experience, because I’ve been through some serious stuff in the last 18 months.
My take is that, while a consistent yoga practice does allow me to turn internally, check-in with myself, and clarify things, the external support of my yoga community makes a profound difference in how I deal with the curve balls of life. We all need community, and our yoga tribe is one of the most caring groups around.
Mom’s Cancer Treatment
This current spate of challenges started in August of 2015, when my beloved mother was diagnosed with her 2nd and 3rd types of cancer. In the coming months, she endured 2 major surgeries, and months of chemo and radiation.
The Bindu Tribe supported her (and me).
Whether it was driving Mom to appointments or just texting her to check in, they enveloped her with love and kindness that, I believe, was a huge part of her optimism and ability to triumph over the illnesses.
Rough Time with Roxie
While all of this was going on, my dog was rushed into surgery in February 2016, for a potentially cancerous growth on her spleen. I was heartsick, as many of you pet owners can appreciate.
The Bindu Tribe cared.
Not only did my yogi friends offer sympathy, but my friend and colleague, Brianna came to my house and performed a Reiki treatment on Roxie to aid in her healing. I don’t think I ever saw a dog rebound so quickly, especially at her advanced age.
Loss of my Dad
Then on October 27th, 2016, my cherished father died. Many members of the yoga community had met my dad, but most had not.
Still, The Bindu Tribe mourned with me.
An incredibly large number of my yoga friends attended his service and offered an empathic shoulder when the tears just wouldn’t stop. My friend Laura, offered her professional services as a therapist to help any member of my family who was having trouble coping with his death.
And just recently, my romantic partnership of the last 2+ years came to an end.
The Bindu Tribe understood.
They understood how quieting the mind became even more difficult. They understood that this relationship, which had come on the heels of my divorce, had been a life line throughout the numerous transitions at home, work and with my family. They understood that I needed both the space to deal with what had happened and the companionship to move forward.
So you see, my friends, it’s not just the practice that get us through the challenges life throws at us; it’s the people we practice with. Some of the richest friendships are formed through sharing the practice of yoga, opening our hearts, and being fully present for each other.
This week, why not reach out to your friends on the mats next to you, learn something new about them, and celebrate this amazing tribe we have!