Normally on my birthday I would reflect back on the year that has passed, note that I am single again (as some kind of failing) and compare myself to what my friends and ex-flings had achieved via the medium of Facebook, Twitter and any other stalking facilitator. Come on, we all do it! This time last year, I was physically and emotionally exhausted and counting down the days until my flight to Delhi where my adventures would begin. I did not have the slightest inkling how rapidly and incredibly my life would change.
Today, on my 33rd birthday I am focusing on the present moment (“That’s Yoga!”) and the things I have in my life which I am truly grateful for. Here are 33 things for my 33rd year in no particular order…
I am THANKFUL for:
- Yoga – obvs. Each and every day.
- My dog, my date, my bundle of love.
- My nephew for teaching me patience as he starts to find and use his voice (that’s me being all ‘yoga’ about it) and for teaching me that I can actually handle dealing with sh1t – literally and figuratively.
- Blue Cheese (ok, I’ll stop).
- My best friend’s husband, Neil. For being the best modern day role model for a husband, friend and father I know.
- My best friend, Amanda. For never failing to make me howl with laughter, for keeping me grounded but above all for always supporting me in all of my right and wrong choices.
- Making a teensy weeny profit from my new business as a Yoga Teacher!
- The Irish Sea – as grim and grey and as much as she hides from the shore in Southport! I see the vastness and freedom of the horizon, the crash of the waves, the smell of the salty sea air and I know I am connected to all the Oceans I have swam in, sat by, sailed and flown over, to those memories and to the people I adore who are spread all across the World.
- My Mum. For being the naughtiest Yoga student I have in class and for being my number one fan.
- My Step-Dad – who has taught me that a comma always follows ‘However’ and that love is unconditional regardless of blood. Oh, and for the wheelie suitcase so I can get my yoga mats into places more easily. From the depths of my lower back I thank you.
- The Manjushri Centre in the Lakes – a beautiful peaceful spot in Ulverston where I can connect and refresh at meditation retreats on home soil.
- My students. You humble me. You inspire me. You teach me. Thank you.
- Guru-Ji, Piriamvada, Rashmi, Krishna Mukti and Charat – you showed me a path to a happier way of life, to a happier me and gave me the space to figure it out for myself. True empowerment, true wisdom, true teaching.
- My sister – for your strength, your giggle and your hand-me-downs now I no longer have a ‘proper’ job.
- Thai Rice takeaway – for having more than one vegetarian food option and for delivering when I’m too tired to cook and need a spicy hit to take me back to SE Asia.
- The local women in business I have had the pleasure to meet so far and who wish to share and teach wellbeing to all –Sharon, Aimee, Nicola, Paula, Mayuri, Cheryl x2, Sian, Heather and Jessica.
- My friends, near and far, old and new, who have supported me with ‘likes’, OMs, messages of encouragement, offers of advice and technical support!
- My car. I know it’s not environmentally friendly but I’m not sure I could get 24 mats, 7 bolsters, 14 blocks, 14 straps, 13 eye masks and 5 blankets on the back of my bike. Although to be fair they would in India….
- My faith in myself, my strength, my heart.
- Simon, my yoga teacher in Southport. For making me do evil, I mean challenging, postures I would quite frankly ignore if I was left to my own devices.
- Dates stuffed with peanut butter. Try it!
- Coconut Water. To hydrate me on the days after the night before (see socially acceptable addictions…) and to take me back to the beaches of Goa and SE Asia.
- My legs. As battle scarred as they are. For the strength in my ‘thunder thighs’ and the ability to climb sand dunes and mountains, to simply be able to place my feet on the ground and walk ‘left foot, right foot’. Simple happiness.
- To my Uncle John and e-harmony for matching with Mayuri 4 years ago. I am overjoyed to be working with her to make my dreams of yoga + food come true!
- To work in a role where I truly have the opportunity to help people.
- Jon Snow. GOT – not Channel 4. (I’m not objectifying, merely appreciating the man…).
- The financial freedom and opportunity to go back to India in November 2016!
- Left over Paneer Satay from last night which I shall devour at lunchtime. Yes, Paneer is cheese…
- Jaya Lakshmi for the beautiful song “This is the day” which reduced me to a snotty mess in a yoga class during my training in India and which reminds me each time I listen to it to continue to surrender and let go of the pretence of ‘control’.
- To age another year. For feeling the breath in my body, the beat of my heart, for being healthy, happy and free.
P.S Did I mention cheese?