This is where my journey began…
I started dancing when I was 4 years old and fell in love.
I loved expressing myself through movement and sharing it with those around me. I felt that I could share a little piece of my heart with them. Even at a young age, I was aware of the depth of this practice, though I couldn’t put it into words I could feel it pulsing through me as I moved.
As I grew older like anything things began to change. Though my love for dance kept me connected, it kept me inspired to be the best possible version of myself. And through this inspiration, I knew there was something much bigger than the tiny picture we are shown.
I could feel it when I moved. That something we are all searching for, it was inside of us. We just needed to reconnect.
We are all a part of something much larger than ourselves. Through movement, I feel this connection. I feel this truth. Dancing helped shape me into an open, expressive woman with a deep connection to my heart and body. Dancing taught me it is okay to be raw, honest and a little bit crazy at times.
Though once in the professional world we are tainted by an image we must uphold. We are told we must look and move a certain way in order to succeed, in order to be accepted. The challenge was to stay true to yourself while trying to fit a mold of perfection.
After years of dancing and pushing myself to my absolute limit, physically and mentally. Altering myself to fit inside a box, parts of myself were falling away. I became a person I didn’t recognize, I was striving for things that didn’t fill me up.
I was beginning to lose myself, going around in circles hoping for a different outcome. Trying to please others only I was hurting myself in the process. Because if nothing changes, nothing changes. So I decided to step away, I decided to take the time to heal.
This is when I found yoga, or yoga found me…
I decided to step away from dancing to dedicate an entire year to self-love. For me Yoga is not just a physical practice, it is a mindset, a way of life. A practice of healing and devotion.
We all have time in our lives that we feel the darkness creeping in. Where our mind is full of doubt and our heart full of hopelessness. It is in these moments the greatest lessons take place. We cannot build ourselves until we fall apart. We can not find ourselves until we let go of who we think we are.
Yoga gives us the tools to heal, It creates space to look at the broken pieces and rebuild our foundation with kindness and love. Here we are able to see our pain for what is it, an opportunity to change, an opportunity to transform.
Yoga has taught me to be kind, not only to those around me but most importantly to myself. It has taught me patience, it has taught me trust. Through these teachings, my entire life has evolved.
It is with this mindset and love for myself that I have returned to dance. I no longer see myself as a dancer but a free mover. I now move with love, without judgment, without expectation. I allow my body to move in order to express not impress. I feel deeply and allow those feelings to move my body.
I now live with a deep connection to my body and mind. I honor my body for all that it is and all that is does. Gone are the days I will torture myself to look a certain way, to fit a picture of perfection.
Each and every one of us is uniquely beautiful in all of our faults, in all of our darkness. And I want to help people see this, I want to help people reconnect with themselves through Yoga, Free Movement and Insights of Truth.
So now here I am.
In India and my journey continues…
I am here to experience all that I can. To absorb all of the culture and knowledge, the beauty and the chaos. I’m here to face the challenges that are presented to me in order to grow. To dance my way through the beautiful times and use my insight to get me through the tough times.
To deepen my yoga practice, to deepen my understanding. To find truth in simplicity, to find lessons in the craziness we call life.
I hope to re-inspire you to try something new or try something old with a different mindset. I hope to help you dive right into life, to surrender in deep trust until you live a life guided by your soul.
Come with me as I surrender to the journey ahead…
Photos by Maleika Halpin & Billie Edwards