Hometown: Tacoma, WA & Riverside, CA
Training(s): Yoga One Yoga Teacher Training 200-hour June 2018, Yoga One Assistant Training August 2018, Rocket Yoga 50-hour August 2019
When I’m not at the studio you can find me: Eating and exploring the city
My Journey with Yoga One and Baptiste Yoga
My journey with Yoga One began when I stood eye-to-eye with my big lie. That lie that sneaks up on me when life seems hard. That lie that tells me that I am not good enough, that I am not strong enough, and that you don’t like me.
My journey with Baptiste Yoga began as a student. Learning yoga as a practice, learning yoga as a source of empowerment, learning myself as a growing person. Along my personal journey I ran from my truth which caused me build walls and hide behind a mask of a perfect person. Someone who was always happy and whose value was determined by the opinion of others.
For many years I operated from a space of scarcity - believing that I didn’t measure up, that I wasn’t talented enough, that I wasn’t worthy of love. My journey through Yoga One Yoga Teacher Training in 2018 opened my eyes to the possibility of a new way of being. Standing with my feet rooted firmly on the earth, head held high, I could finally face my lie and say ‘I am connection. I am worthy of love. I am courage.’
One theme of Baptiste Yoga that has landed for me is “Give Up What You Must.” For me, this shows up the most when it comes to my old way of being. I carried so much of my past with me and used it to impact my relationships and behaviors.
In 2011 I gave up my relationship with drugs and alcohol. I was running from myself, the people in my life and allowing fear to run my world. I was scared. I was unsure what I would replace alcohol with in my life. Through recovery I gained a deeper sense of the trauma I was carrying in my body. The only way out of the fire was through it. I could no longer run and hide. Growth required bravery, courage and willingness.
On my recovery journey I understood the connection that exists between yoga and experiencing life wide awake. The willingness to feel my feelings, wrestling with fear and resistance, opened up a new way of life. It hasn’t been an easy journey, though it has been a journey that opened up my relationship to others, with myself and understanding the cost of hiding.
Yoga revealed a new way of processing emotions and getting present in my body. I was often fighting through tears and frustration during my home practice. My strive for perfection created rocks in my practice. After moving to Charlotte I began practicing in community with others at Yoga One, Y12SR and Charlotte Acronuts. I met more people who shared my strive for connection and growth. I discovered that hiding myself and my story was blocking me from true connection with others. I was robbing myself of love.
In order to give up my old way of being I had be willing to unlearn the behaviors which pushed others away. This showed up in my practice by staying in poses longer than my mind said I could. By opening up to others about my story and life experiences as a way to build connection and be seen fully. I had to give up that alcohol was the answer to escape - the reality was that I had everything I need to stay in the sensation of the process.
My teacher training opened my eyes through the Baptiste methodology that my life is worth living and sharing. As a teacher I have a new found vessel by which I can share my world with others as a tool of empowerment, awakening and inspiration.
I went through a career shift in 2019 and found inspiration to dedicate my time and energy as a full-time yoga teacher. It is important to me to honor my roots as a social justice activist and I’ve found ways to connect those pieces of my identity through yoga and creating more inclusive yoga spaces on the basis of race, gender identity, sexual identity and body positivity.
Today I am committed to sharing the empowerment I experienced through Baptiste Yoga with my students. By sharing who I am and how I am showing up. As a non-binary queer person of color I find my connection to others is especially important because we are so often pushed to the edges of communities.
I am connection.
Personal motto/ words I live by: Face life together, one day at a time.
Any pets?: My heart belongs to the many pups I sit for
Favorite treat: Vegan mac & cheese from Fern Flavors of the Garden
Favorite destination: Mountain terrain with forest hikes
“We missed the reality and the beauty of the forest because we were diverted by the ugliness of some of its trees.” - Bill W.