By Dana Gornall
I’m not a fan of column title changes—to be honest.
The left-brained, business minded part of me says consistency is key to success, not to mention hiccups in SEO (search engine optimization) that can poke holes in our site. Mind you, minor holes, but holes are holes. So, whenever people want to make big switches, I inwardly cringe a little.
But there are times when change is necessary.
I started my column as The Yoga Slut. My spiritual journey began by stumbling on yoga and slowly falling in love, but not really knowing where to go with it. As a mom of young children, it wasn’t anything I could fit into my routine regularly, but I relished in the few classes I could attend. I went to so many different types and styles, so many different teachers, and jokingly told one of my friends I was turning into a yoga slut.
Finally, I settled neatly on Iyengar yoga. I loved the preciseness, the clear instruction and all of the props. I even entertained going through the grueling process of becoming an Iyengar teacher (or attempting to). If anyone is familiar with Iyengar yoga, you will know that it is one of the longest, most stringent, thorough processes to become certified, and can take years—maybe decades. No joke. But this was one of the many reasons why I loved it.
Then the pandemic happened, the studio temporarily shut down and my practice went sideways. Sure, there were the online classes, but it just wasn’t the same and I didn’t have all the props.
I still love yoga…I want to go back when the studio re-opens and it’s safe. I think I will always love it…but it no longer is the center of my life (or one of the centers).
I really don’t have a center anymore, other than this somewhat gaping hole of who I was and trying to figure out who I will be. For the last two decades I was a mom—and that doesn’t change, I will always be a mom. But my children are no longer children. My days once filled with soccer and tumbling practice have been replaced with 90 Day Fiance and The Office re-runs. I mask up and go to the gym, I grocery shop, I cook food and do all of the typical chores. I am still a mom and do my best to shift my parenting to being a parent of young adults.
Everything has changed.
This column I had of being The Yoga Slut no longer fits, like a shoe that has been worn for too many years and the soles have thinned down. As I sit in this middle space of uneasiness; where to go from here and what will be next, I realize I am once again searching (maybe, really I never actually stopped?). But there is something about this moment of middle-ness that is a little paralyzing at times. Like a four-step square dance I shift forward and back in the same spot over and over.
Awhile back I created a little personal blog about being an ordinary person looking for zen in a mixed up world. It seemed fitting, as beliefs and opinions divide, as my own little private inner world was flipping upside down, and now it seems even more fitting than ever.
So while I hate making title changes, while I prefer a bit of consistency, there seems to be a time when we find ourselves at a fork in the road. A time for change. I’m looking for a bit of Zen—a bit of peace, understanding, equanimity in the unequanimious space. I’m not sure where it is going or where it will lead. But I hope you will kindly join me on this journey, one four-step at a time.
“The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.” ~William Arthur Ward