My Personal Journey of Healing Through Yoga
When I was young I played a lot of sports like soccer, rugby, tennis, and I even ran marathons. But because of work, accidents (and family), I became sedentary and ill with a laundry list of health issues.
This list includes: sciatica, premature degeneration of L4/L5 discs, carpel tunnel syndrome, spinal bone spur growths, and the list goes on... Not to mention I was depressed, overweight, using drugs, and addicted to tobacco, sugar, and fatty foods.
I went to see doctors and all they did was put me on Vioxx, Celebrex, and pain killers, and nothing seemed to help. So one day I went to see a nutritionist and I started practicing yoga. I was 44-years-old.
The nutritionist taught me about eating veggies, fruits, and consuming lots of water, and that I'd never get heavier if I ate no more calories than I was able to burn off in one day.
Then there was the yoga!
Being a guy, I was terrified to enter a place outside my comfort zone. But what I found was an amazing world:
- A world where my body slowly healed
- A world where my body became physically stronger
- A world where my body became flexible again
- A world where emotionally I suffered less
- A world where emotionally I felt like I had more freedom
- A world of yoga that had the tools to heal
I wasn't doing amazing poses, I was simply going to vinyasa flow and hatha yoga classes. I would go to basics after basics after basics classes for years. Then one day one of my favorite yoga teachers, a man by the name of Frank Mauro at OM yoga, told me to leave his basics class and try a basics intermediate and/or intermediate.
I was almost 50-years-old and my back muscles had become strong enough and supported my spine so my L4/L5 disk could heal. Years of yoga enabled my sciatica down my left leg to heal and I became pain free.
Yoga had healed my body.
Yoga made my body stronger and more flexible.
Then another "funny thing that happened on the way to the forum" - I found that after you practice yoga long enough, yoga starts to shift the way you look at yourself and the world around you:
- You start to take better care of yourself
- You start to honor your own feelings, which may have been terrifying before
- You start to erect and respect your own and others' healthy boundaries
Yoga has healed me in so many ways. In fact, I am so grateful to all my different yoga teachers that I am now teaching and guiding others a few times a week, simply passing on that which I consider a gift. Thank you to all my wonderful teachers - you know who you are!