How I Found My Bliss
Why did I choose the name Body and Bliss? What does it mean to me?
Your body is AMAZING; it’s stronger than you know. How do I know that? Because I became the strongest I've ever been at age 50! You may also be unaware of just how capable and amazing and strong you are, inside and out.
The bliss is the joy I found once I uncovered my strength. Sometimes you have to understand pain to understand bliss, and I have experienced both. Bliss is digging deep, learning about yourself and what makes you feel happy in your soul. Bliss is finding out what feels good and confident and healthy in your body. Learning what things energetically drain you, so you minimize their presence in your life. It's meditating to really listen to the conversation you're having with yourself, and having daily habits that bring you more BLISS - every day.
I am a certified yoga teacher, studying 400+ hours through two different schools of alignment-based hatha/vinyasa. I've studied meditation under the master Deepak Chopra at his center in Carlsbad, CA. I'm a certified teacher and teacher-trainer in Aerial Yoga, and I've been a dance teacher (ballet, tap, jazz), Barre instructor, and most recently studied fitness through both the American Council on Exercise (ACE) and the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM).
My love of movement started with ballet at age 3 and danced until I was I my teens, so I liked being physically active. I have always been petite but heard 1000x growing up how I was ‘too skinny’. Keeping my weight down wasn’t my issue, but I didn't like how I looked. I was embarrassed; I hated showing my arms and hid them under tops that covered them. I was small but I was NOT strong. I was scrawny.
The first time I picked up weights, I was 19 and they were probably 2 or 3 lbs in one of those all-pink-ladies-only-gyms. And I felt badass (now my wine glass at the end of the day probably weighs more than that!).
In my mid-30’s I tried a Pilates class. And the tiny, strong, adorable instructor demonstrated a chaturanga and I LAUGHED. Like as if ANYONE can do that - elbows back, belly tight, don’t smack your face on the floor on the way down?! Yeah, RIGHT! I remember even looking around the room for support - like “hey are you ALL seeing how bananas that is, what she is suggesting we do??!” Except they were all doing it - while I was aghast.
Then I had a trainer who became a really good friend and I followed her from one gym to another and got a bit stronger and a little more aware about this world of fitness. She suggested I give yoga a try.
I took a yoga class or two. Which I hated.
Didn’t get it, didn’t want to get it. I took a meditation class with two friends. 10 minutes into it, two of us bailed and were in the bar ordering martinis and laughing about what a bizarre experience THAT was.
Then the pain appeared; over a short period of six weeks, three life events that had me feeling like my life was spun out of control. I felt best when I went to yoga, so I kept going back as often as I could. I then decided I also wanted to teach so I could share the magic. I fully immersed myself in in yoga and meditation and felt like I had finally found ‘my thing’.
Just before my 50th birthday I went deeper into strength training with the help of another great trainer, and also took a deep-dive into the emotional and spiritual side of myself. Doing the hard things, working harder than I ever had, and finally asking tougher questions of myself than I ever had. And not accepting half-ass results or answers from myself. It was time to get to know myself in a way I never had before.
I finally woke up. The best way I can describe it is that for the first time in my life, I finally felt AWAKE and ALIVE.
I admitted to myself I had been a numb participant in my marriage for the last few years, overlooking things I shouldn't have overlooked and over-giving until I was energetically drained. It was hard, all the honest emotions and pain and unraveling. But ALIVE. FEELING SOMETHING, finally.
I’m stronger than I’ve ever been now, emotionally and physically. I am more connected to my spiritual side than ever before (that inner wisdom we often push aside). I'm stronger than ever, more concerned about humanity than ever, more aware of social injustice than ever, more alive than ever. I wish the same for all of you.
It’s in you, just like it was in me all along.