You Said: Reader Comments on Yoga as Healing--David Wegenast,
Yoga has healed me in so many ways. Following the sudden and unexpected loss of my fiancé, yoga helped to keep me grounded during my grief. During class, my mind was often elsewhere and during savasana, I sometimes cried. It was a way to take care of myself while I walked thru the valley of the shadows.
I began yoga as a way to develop a stronger mind-body connection. I had a history of dieting, yo-yo weight loss, bulimia and a very negative and distorted body image. I now have a body that tells me what it loves and what it doesn't enjoy. And, we love yoga!
I also practice yoga to deepen my spirituality.
And, I'm entering the creaky stage of mid-life where I have to do yoga in the morning because of stiffness. Yoga keeps me limber, loose and straight!
I am a survivor of severe childhood trauma: emotional, physical, and sexual abuse that spanned my life from a motherless toddler to a seventeen year old, when I left. The most basic need I had to meet for myself was survival. The cost of that was immense: I was a stranger in a strange land of dating and relationships, marriage, motherhood all happening too quickly for a girl who hardly had a self. Yet I had some tools to help with survival: books, music, drawing and working out physically. From an early age I was a member of Sokols, a Czech physical fitness program in my hometown. Sokols provided gymnastics, weight training, and ballet for the community. For me it provided a safe place, opportunities for success, structure, physical development and fun. As an adult, in a different place and time, I discovered yoga to be an even greater healer of the wounded self. I often cried during my first yoga classes, silently, deeply moved, while hidden corners of my self began to be filled with a warm light. I decided to study to be a doctor of natural health. I knew I wanted to help people to experience nature cure: water, light, air, earth, and curative movement in the form of yoga. I know how it has graced me. I am studying acu-yoga. I just found out about Viniyoga from Yoga Journal. I think yoga could be helpful to victims of childhood trauma by helping us learn to love and trust our own bodies; to unknot all the tension and tightness we we wrapped our selves in over our lifetimes.
With Yogic breathing I was able to recycle my menstruation at menopause, without hormones.
I have been taking yoga classes for almost two years now and enjoy every minute of it. I initially began taking yoga as a way to regain my flexibility, as I work in an automotive plant and it is very rigorous, but repetitive as well. After the first few classes, I noticed that after class I felt much more relaxed and a few coworkers noticed that my level of patience was beginning to change. I noticed that I was able to deal with the tedium of the repetitiveness of the day much better and my whole day went better as well.
Since the first month things have greatly improved, flexibility and mental state are totally changed and I just feel better. Yoga also had a hidden benefit. When I found out that I was expecting a baby, it made it easier for me to deal with the added stress on my system.