A Lesson in Karma



I woke up this morning and my face had almost tripled in size. It can't be the cookies I had during the night (3) no no, and it can't be the fruity Canadian pancakes either because they have fruit in them? Hmm... Perhaps it was the nine litres of fluids I had pumped into me over the space of around four hours.

I looked in the mirror this morning and pondered over what on Gods earth had I done to deserve this? Seriously you take my hair and now you've compromised my looks?! There's only once thing I can come up with that could have potientally caused me some nasty karma and I will tell you all about it.

Some of you may know (because I do tend to harp on) that I trained as a yoga teacher in Greece this summer. Each day we woke up at 6am, meditated, did the yoga, ate, did the lessons, ate, did the yoga and chanted. This was actually very pleasant and peaceful! The one thing I did get out of it was for the previous years I suffered from severe anxiety after all the chemo I had in 2012. I really couldn't get rid of it and it eventually turned into OCD. After this yoga trip it completely left my system it was like a switch/lightbulb/blessing. Even today when I'm hooked up to chemo I have a lot more awareness on how to control my mind, amazing!

Anyway I'm falling off track, this yoga trip was not quite what it seemed. Firstly it was advertised that we would be living by the beautiful Cretan sea, when infact it was a building site on the opposite end of the island. Food portions (after working out all day) turned out to be "Sativ" portions. That means you're no getting a big plate hen. No protein or carbs. I was caught on several occasions eating waffles down by the beach cafe which was illegal. (The picture in the blog explains). There were 15 of us on the course and I shared a room with two lovely ladies, Marie from Copenhagen and Jess from California; both much much cooler and fabulous than me, I miss them!

We had anatomy, yogic philosophy and psychology every afternoon. That's three very large books. A lot to learn in a month, like the whole anatomy of a human? One very hot day I remember in our philosophy class our teacher Maria explaining a little bit about "Karma Yoga" which is also called "yoga of action". The concept is that avoiding work or selfless service is not the path "to become free of bondage". At this point in the discussion Maria announced that it was now time for us to get up, go outside and weed her garden.

I looked around; shocked, shook and personally victimised. This trip cost me 4,000 dollar bills. I was expecting to be lying in a hammock most of the day whilst making a playlist for my yoga class at the end of the course.

No one flinched in the class as we pottered outside to begin the weeding. I just couldn't get my head round why we were weeding the garden when it was so hot? Why? Why Maria Why? Of course my first port of call was my roommates, Marie and Jess. This is where I started to stir the pot, I was rising up like a bad curry and I tried to get the girls involved. We were all sat meters away and breaking the one rule. Weeding was to be done in silence. I muttered to the girls that I wanted to cause an uprising, fight back; "we should go swimming or go study at least". At this point our teacher has sped off to the garden centre to get some shrubs. This pushed me and Maria over the edge and we went swimming instead. A few others left too.

The garden itself was indeed was in need of some serious TLC, with the camp divided, what on earth was Maria going to say when she returned to find her garden still in rack and ruin?

Well I'm sorry to say the outcome was not good. I remember the next day getting a serious talking too. Most of us were pretty tired with the no food, no washing facilities and a lot of heated exercise. One girl even left! At the time I remember feeling pretty over it. That was until the last few days where I began to realise that the experience had actually been pretty good for me.

So, in hindsight this yoga course changed my life, but at the time it wasn't making me happy. The only thing that I can compare it too is T in the Park 2012 when it poured with rain, you couldn't walk in the mud, half my friends had bailed and loosing most belongings. But after you get home, have a shower and look at the piccys you're like actually that was fun and I wish I could do it again.

Ps. Needless to say after being told there was no washing machines in the house and washing our clothes in basins for a month; when Marie and I snuck into a forbidden room one night and stumbled upon a fully fitted laundry room with the works, it was heavily used for the last few days. I remember sending my mum and dad this picture and they found it hilarious. Basically because one of my little OCD ish ness used to be washing my clothes ALL the time. This trip certainly broke that habit.







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