This marks my one-year anniversary.
It’s been just about one year since I mysored for the first time with my teacher, David Garrigues.
One year since I left the practice room, pissed off – and ready to drive home after being called out, busted on and worked over. He had just met me but wasted no time getting down to business. In ninety minutes, I learned to hate the sound of my name.
Later in the day, I made a choice. And I went back.
I actually questioned everything he told me to do but for whatever reason, I chose to follow every damn piece of direction he gave me – if only to prove I could. Apparently unaware of the big ol’ chip I was carrying, he seemed pleased.
Fast forward one year later, and I don’t think anyone can deny – my practice changed. Actually, a lot has changed. It’s pretty remarkable and I look back and am grateful I didn’t leave that day.
But trust is hard for me. Commitment can often be even harder. I have lots of questions and doubt, a constant companion.
So yesterday, the almost anniversary of my first OBX David Garrigues experience it was not his voice I heard busting on me – it was my own. I went through my practice feeling painfully unworthy of each next pose, with the previous not quite mastered.
I left the room and I questioned myself. And I questioned my teacher … literally. I let him know how I was feeling and wondered aloud, was I a fraud?
“It’s a trust thing. And THAT is a choice.”
And all of a sudden, I realized it wasn’t just myself I had doubted, but in doing so, my teacher as well.
Lets face it, if you know David – he’s not exactly mainstream. An ex-punk rocker, in board shorts and a tank who often rides his skateboard to class, to say he’s eccentric is truly an understatement.
He’s also pretty unconventional as a teacher. Truth is, David is pretty generous with the props and postures – and yet, still not nearly as generous as he is with himself. So we sat and we talked …
“It causes dissonance when a teacher challenges you – in postures and in belief systems. Students can switch teachers and seek outside help when they find themselves doubting or questioning – but this only encourages the escape factor.”
Aaaaah, the escape factor. I know this one well. I’m pretty adept at it on the mat and off. And this faith thing is hard for me. More than any advanced series posture, I struggle with this many times more.
David challenges me often. From that first day – until this day. And because of this, I have angst. So it comes down to a trust thing, and I imagine it will again and again for me. And actually, that’s a pretty important part of my growth. Way more important that Eka Pada Bakasana, that’s for sure.
Today, I feel pretty grateful to have someone just as willing to help me on my mat as off. Because it’s not about me – it’s about us:
“The relationship is key. I’m not the master dispensing the wisdom. We are discovering it together.”