March 15, 2018 by Darlene McC
Greetings once again from Thailand and the beautiful island of Koh Phanang. I was up for the sunrise yoga and meditation this morning, a quick swim, and settling in for my second full day on an island paradise.
It hasn’t been all sunshine, though. My first day and a half were a challenge – I was suffering from terrible jet lag, bad enough to make me nauseous most of the day. I had to give in and sleep for the sake of my sanity. Mixed in with the jet lag was a heavy dose of homesick, triggered by some imposter syndrome.
Yesterday morning I had breakfast at a little coffee shop on the main drag in the village. I was surrounded by yogi expats – tanned, fit, attractive and everyone seemed to know one another. They all looked like they were out of central casting for a beach movie set in paradise with the wardrobe and scooters to match. I tried to smile and make eye contact; but failed to even get a response.
By early afternoon I was a bit dejected ~ but I’m lucky. I have friends around the world who love and support me, so even though everyone in New York was asleep my dear friend Jackie stepped up. She reminded me that I’m here for a reason. That for over a year I’ve been lead to being here, right now, and I’ve got a lot to learn about myself, my body, teaching, yoga, and the world at large. I admit it, I cried a little. But I felt better after.
I needed to stay out of the mid-day sun, so I planted on my porch with my ukulele and started plucking away… and passers-by actually smiled back! Burned a few hours, grabbed a bite, then headed over the Zen Beach where yogis are rumored to gather at sunset.
What I found was the largest most joyous drum circle of my life! People were laughing, chanting, clapping, and dancing… and after a little while I was one of them. I managed to make my first friend on the island, a lively Dutch woman with an infectious smile. She teased me for not knowing where anything is; and I reminded her I’ve only been here for 24 hours. Then she tried to convince me to just move here… seems a little soon for that.
There’s still 2 days before yoga school starts. I’m sure there will be more moments of feeling overwhelmed or lonely. In those moments I’ll do my best to remind myself that part of the reason I came all this way was to get out of my normal way of thinking about and seeing the world. To break my old mental rhythms and find other ways to live.
Some of that process is bound to be uncomfortable.
You have to see messes clearly before you can clean them up.