Here I write about travel, my developing culinary skills, the practice of yoga and new ways of living; basically the journey so far.
After closing my yoga school, I began to travel a lot and in particular to South Germany near the Swiss border. For me, this is great but not because it is always a high moment. In fact, landing in a new country and closing my school, which was a fabric of my entire being for 15 years was definitely tough. I say it is great because of the trials and tribulations it sparked by making me grow and change in both new and unexpected ways. Ultimately what I mean by great is the gamut of issues that change creates.
It takes courage to step away from the 'known' to live a new dream. In life, I have found you have to let go of some dreams in order for another to be birthed.
Change is difficult and there is no way around it. My inner muse is fond of reminding me how other forces were and are at play. I think we tend to believe we are in control of our fate, but life and certainly love has its own course.
For me and having taken my wedding vows later in life I am positive it made me more aware of my reactions to change. It feels more uprooting to change having built a life before it especially over 40. I had made other dramatic moves in my life like moving to South Korea, but I was also 25 years old. As we age we develop many layers and a rigidity as to how far we want to go. A lot of this may be unconscious until circumstances and your life situation bring it to the surface. Or, let me put it another way, I become more aware that the distance between fulfilling any of my dreams was decreasing in comparison to the time left to reach them.
We generally believe that if we get the job, the marriage, the salary, the new house and whatever else everything will become great. And it probably is like that for a while. However, as real life happens becoming too comfortable is a lot like not living at all. I once read from Pema Chodron, 'We are conditioned to believe life is about seeking security and comfort, but life is really about having the carpet swept from under your feet.'
When I choose to close my Yoga school and embark on a new journey it wasn't necessarily a difficult choice to make as it was more difficult to "live". I had been very successful in founding and directing my own school. It sustained and fulfilled me both mentally and financially. I was able to take annual trips to India to study under my teachers and had great students who were loyal to me. But something was missing or rather something was yet to be fulfilled. By most standards, I had a great career, a good practice and was making a living. No one should think I closed my school because I couldn't cut it.
But in my life the pendulum had swung too far in one direction. I had to swing it back and hopefully I would find myself somewhere in the middle; somewhere down the line.
Now when I press fast-forward and with my first child it feels like another new beginning and with it a series of other ones to follow. I always knew I wanted to be a mom, but had pushed it so far back with my career ahead of it. I was 42 years old when I became pregnant for the second time. I was fortunate enough not to undergo fertility treatments to become pregnant. And I also had an incredible water birth without medication.
From these experiences I really can say it is not possible to have it all; at least not at the same time. I could not have had my son and run my school, house, practice, study and travel. For me, it was so much more than a business, but I had to let it go. This is why I feel we often have to let go of some dreams in order for another to be born.
If you hang on too tightly what will your life become? I think, it is important to find balance, peace and love in life.
And if we have to give up something to do it then that 'something' is not the real thing anyway.
The Journey So Far
Life is an adventure and yoga is the greatest one of all. Here I share my love of Yoga, travel, practice and becoming a part-time cook. My life adventures have taken me from growing up in Toronto to living and working in South Korea to studying in India, marriage and finally closing my Yoga school of 15 years.
What I can say so far is that I truly believe that it is necessary in life to let go of one dream in order for another to be born. This might be painful to do so but it is the only way to move forward. We often believe that if our original plan does not succeed it is the recipe for failure. But what if it is the door to something new and great? The horizon is wide and life is not a straight line. This is the way I see it and my journey so far. Having also recently given birth to my first child and at 43, it is another new beginning.
- Heather Morton
- is a perennial teacher and devoted student of yoga. Having made 18 extended trips to India she studies with her teachers annually. In 1997 she founded and directed The Yoga Way (TYW), Toronto's only school for 6-week yoga programs and not drop-in classes. For 15 years, TYW was a part of the growing Toronto yoga community and supported many charities by offering karma classes. As a teacher she holds many academic degrees including a BFA (Fine Arts in Theatre) and a Masters of Education. With a published thesis on Yoga for Children in School, her post-graduate work was a 2-year ethnographic project in the Indian school system. Heather has produced 2 dvds, meditation cds, a backbending manual and podcasts. Freedom of the Body DVD is the first of its kind as an instructional practice to the backbends of yoga. Heather has been featured in the Toronto Life magazine, The Globe & Mail, Yoga4Everybody and other on-line sources. She contributes to MindBodyGreen, Hello Yoga in Japan and Elephant Journal. She writes to inspire and share her experiences with others on yoga as a life's practice.
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