Happy Sunday friends!! My lovely friend has an amazing post for you. This gal rocks, and y’all need to check out her blog!
Her story is a true testament to how amazing this practice of yoga is! Enjoy friends. <3
When I started practicing yoga, it was for the exercise and calorie burning. I was still deep in my eating disorder, had to stop running due to injuries, and wasn’t allowed by my support system to have a gym membership. I spent hours in the hot yoga studio practicing Bikram yoga, until I was forced to give it up during treatment. After discharging from treatment, I went back to that type of hot yoga, only to discover I had a back injury that would sideline me from any activity for months.
I stumbled upon the meditative vinyasa flow of the Baptiste Yoga practice while trying to find a way to get back into exercising. I will admit, it was mostly eating disorder driven. I knew this wasn’t “hot yoga” but it was a way to exercise regardless. I did not step into the yoga studio I found with the intention of falling in love with the practice, and in turn, finding myself. It is only because God is GOOD that those things happened. He used a physical practice to reach me when my mind was so disconnected from my body that I could hardly feel emotions.
Through yoga, I found out exercise could be FUN. That it wasn’t a competition, a test to see how far I could push myself, or a way to give myself permission to eat. Yes, I still struggle with those things, but my yoga practice has still been very healing for my exercise addiction and eating disorder. When I got on my mat, I found I could get out of my head. I could focus on nothing but breathing for an hour. When I focused on breathing, I connected to my body. When I connected to my body, I found truth.
The truth I found on my yoga mat did more for my recovery than any amount or form of treatment did. In the quiet space between the inhales and exhales, I was emptied. I began to see my eating disorder and exercise addiction for what it really was. Harmful. Punishing. Ineffective. When I was emptied, I had to then find ways to fill the space inside me. Yoga helped me begin to fill it with truths, replacing the lies I had believed for so many years.
My body is in love with me. It is constantly doing all it can to keep me alive and well.
My body saves me. Despite my best efforts to destroy my physical being, I am still here.
I am not my body. I am Lindsey. And that is so much more than a size or weight or shape.
I have to take care of my body. I daily pay consequences of having an eating disorder for over a decade. My body has healed amazingly, but it is still the only one I get.
I am not invincible.
I have everything I need inside of me, because God is inside of me, and God is everything I need.
How I practice on my mat, is how I do life. If I push, am impatient and judgmental in my practice- I am like that in life also. If I am gentle, give myself grace and space, I will do that off my mat as well.
My body is strong, nut more importantly, so is my mind.
Peace starts from within.
Yoga has helped shape me into the happiest, best version of myself. I am more free than I have ever been, because I no longer rely on approval from others or my eating disorder. I am a work in progress, and always will be. Yoga has helped me accept that. Just like I couldn’t do cool arm balances or inversions overnight, I can’t recover overnight or be the person God made me to be overnight. I have learned patience with myself, and I finally understand the word I have had tattooed on my wrist for 3 years…GRACE.
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