I have a tattoo of a crocodile. Some of you may have seen it peeping out of a corner on my back. It isn't a scaly, scary crocodile, but a geometric crocodile that is half under water. It's lurking a bit, waiting.
The minor Hindu goddess Akhilāṇḑeśvarī, the Goddess Never-Not-Broken and one of the forms of Parvati, is sometimes presented riding a crocodile. Crocodiles wait quietly for their prey, snatch them, and drown them. They spin them around, disorienting the unsuspecting. The Goddess Never-Not-Broken, who is constantly taking herself apart and putting herself back together, continually changing and remaking herself, does not fear the disorientation of change, but instead embraces it and rides the crocodile.
It's taken me a long time to be okay with change. Even "good" change used to really throw me for a loop. When I first came across Akhilāṇḑeśvarī seven years ago, I was in the middle of a massive change, and was feeling incredibly disoriented by it all. I changed my name, got divorced, moved several times, changed careers (twice), all within a year.
During that time, the idea of riding the crocodile was in the front of my mind. I had the crocodile tattooed on my side as a reminder to myself — don't fear the change; ride the crocodile that is always looming.
Since then, I've gotten better at embracing change as it comes, sometimes by invitation, other times from outside of me. Some of these changes have been exhilarating, others have been more work, but I've been learning to grip less tightly to what I know, and stepping into the unknown with a little more abandon and a lot less fear.
Another big change is coming — this one I've invited. This summer I will be moving to Moncton, New Brunswick. Although I grew up on the prairies, my family is from back east, and after having lived in Toronto since 2003, it's time to go. My youngest child is graduating from high school in June — I had promised the kids that I would stay in Toronto until they were finished high school.
In September of 2015 I opened up my home and started teaching yoga in what had been my living room. Many of you have joined me here for classes, workshops, meditation, breathing, and philosophy since then. On February 27 the studio will be closed for a period as my house will be going on the market. I'm not sure how long I will be unable to teach in the house, but I'm planning on teaching classes again after the house is sold until the closing date. All TBD at this point. It feels a little like I'm on a crocodile ride.
I hope that you will join me in the next two weeks. Pre-register for ELDOA this Tuesday and next, and drop-in Yoga For Life classes are still happening, as listed on the schedule. There is a Restorative & Yoga Nidra class February 23 that still has spaces available.
I will send out another note to keep you posted on when classes will resume.
See you on the mat,