“Contempt prior to examination” was a phrase used by William Paley, an 18th-century English Christian apologist.
I wouldn’t say I had contempt, but I was definitely skeptical of yoga. Really, how powerful, healing, meditative, etc could it be?
About 7 weeks after Tinlsey died, when I was ‘physically recovered,’ I started going to yoga classes at the Newtown Yoga Center (NYC). This was probably the best decision I’ve made for myself/recommendation I’ve followed in my grief journey. Like other moms of stillborns, I felt completely detached from my body, or at times, an extreme hatred towards my own body. It let me down. It let my daughter down.
I got really, really lucky that the yoga studio I chose is so attuned to trauma. In fact, NYC is a trauma-aware center, and the teachers and students reflect that in their compassion, connection, and empathy with one another during practice. The owner of the center also brings her therapy dog, Truth, to class sometimes. In the early weeks of my attending, he would make a beeline towards me as soon as I walked in the studio. As time has gone by, as I’ve started to heal, he’s not as attentive towards me unless I’m having a really hard morning.
I don’t know how or why it works to release emotions, but IT DOES. I cry at the end of most classes and I’m told this is normal and good. Something about us storing memories and pain in our bodies and the movement releasing them? It was also suggested that after a good cry I make sure to hydrate to help flush out extra toxins that may have been released in my body. A good Epsom salt bath apparently can go a long way, as well as Floatation Therapy.
Yoga is a rabbit hole I may dive down….I did buy the mat. And I will do anything to work through the pain of Tinsley’s death and emerge as the healthiest and strongest mom for children I can be.