Before I moved to Florida in January of 1996, I retired from Human Services as a caseworker, a career in which some days were greatly gratifying and others a true heartbreaker. My husband Bob and I married in November of 1995 after having known each other for 24 years. We bought our first home in Florida while on our honeymoon.
My first try at yoga was an attempt of self-taught yoga with a book. That didn’t last long. My next attempt was when I joined Bonnie at her old yoga studio. For the first couple of years I only practiced gentle yoga due to pain and a couple of surgeries. Since Bonnie opened her new Yoga Sanctuary, I have become a regular student.
After my back surgery, I wanted to get into yoga more regularly to help me regain lost strength, acquire knowledge for improved breathing (for my asthma and emphysema), and to help my balance. I had a compressed nerve for a year before my back surgery which caused nerve damage. Luckily I did have some nerve rejuvenation with the aid of medication and my gentle yoga. The stretching in class was a tremendous boost to my recovery.
I attend 4 to 6 classes a week, unless it’s September when we do the yoga challenge—what fun! I enjoy level one, gentle, yin, and just recently started mixed. I also like to do meditation and restorative. My biggest challenge is still balance. My yoga instructors are such a beautiful blend of their differences. They each have a very calming effect on their students and they have all been a huge inspiration to me.
When I’m not on the mat, my favorite place is the beach. I love the water. When I’m not at yoga or on the beach, I stay busy trying to help my best friend who no longer drives due to her diabetes. I have also been honored by being asked to be a deacon at my church. My flock keeps me busy with cards, extended communion, or whatever else is needed.
I have two biological sons. My older son, Lance passed away in 2012. My youngest son Shawn lives in Boston with his wife Satya. My “bonus” son Jeff lives in Sarasota with his wife Lisa and my two youngest grand kids, Olivia and Jack. My “bonus” daughter Jen lives in Virginia with her husband Brent and my oldest grandson Jeffrey. Their daughter Brittany goes to college in Toledo, Ohio. My husband and I are so very blessed.
A couple of my favorite poses are Downward Facing Dog and Plank. They just feel good and enable me to feel my own strength. I try to live by my own theory. If I’m not where I want to be, doing what I want to do, when I want to do it, then I must be where I’m needed.