Looking back on some pictures from college has got me feeling so nostalgic. I'm beginning to recollect strange memories I thought were lost on me.
I was so ready for college and the whole experience because I had prepared for it the whole year. The idea of staying away from home was exciting and so new. I was ready to meet people from all walks of life! My dad has told me some crazy stories from his times at college and so I was waiting to have some stories of my own too!
The first day of settling in, I had packed two huge suitcases full of things I would need and some I wouldn't too. I was prepared for a solid 3 months away from home.
My first room, F-405, will always hold a special place in my heart. I was hoping to be there early enough to take my pick of bunk-beds, but I soon figured I was the last of the 6 girls to share one room. Can you imagine living with 5 other girls?! It would mean 5 other ways of doing one thing, 5 different opinions on all matters, and 5 different ring tones throughout the day and night. The room was already a hot mess by the time I got there, and there was no one to welcome me or help me out. But I was happy to have some time to organise my things my way and get used to my new home.
Later that day, I got to meet the girls I was about to be living with, one by one. Little did I know these girls would grow to be my home away from home.
These girls and my 2nd year roommates are some of the warmest people I have the pleasure of knowing.
I've learnt patience, compassion, sisterhood and selflessness from each of them.
My whole first year, I was somehow still able to lay out my mat in our room and practice even when chaos broke out around me. Soon they got used to coming back in the evening, only to find me standing on my head! Now, they're pretty used to it, and my crazy practices go unnoticed.
I promised myself one thing before I started college ; that I would not give up Yoga and my health.
It was important to me to not give up what I had spent the past year learning. And I didn't! I found it rather difficult in the beginning to practice by myself with no one to guide me. That meant I would have to be more aware of what I was doing in order not to hurt myself.
These past three years, I have learnt to love this time on my mat. Sometimes I find 15 mins at 12:00 am to practice and refresh myself, take some time away from preparing for exams. I had to cram 1h of Yoga into effectively 15mins, and it had to be energising enough to take my mind off things and to help me keep going.
Until college had forced me to be responsible, I hadn't realised my love for Yoga. Yes, I had just done a 9 month rigorous Teacher Training Course, but I didn't realise how much I would need Yoga to help me deal with this new life my own way.
I can't recall one bad day that wasn't followed by an hour on my mat the next morning.
Sleepless nights, frustrating exams, difficult situations? The one thing all these problems had in common was my urge to get on my pink mat and forget all about them.
I was able to hone my knowledge, practice for myself, answer questions related to Yoga, persuade my roommates to try a few Suryanamaskars, teach Yoga at a local Govt school, get certified as a teacher, learn about Ayurvedic Diet and Nutrition, be on a Podcast and create this blog (because my roommate in 2nd year suggested it) all in these past three years!
Looking back, I realise how much support I received from all my friends, and also people who weren't my friends, but heard about my practice!
Some of you might not know the first thing about Yoga, but you still manage to support and encourage me, so thank you!
So, I hope you guys reading this don't forget, or stop doing, something you love. Just because others don't understand it, doesn't mean they won't support you! What you love doing will support you, so keep going!
Stay Safe, Stay Aware!