Today I sat down at my desk with a cup of hot green tea and read this excerpt from Ana Forrest’s “Fierce Medicine”.

“Size has nothing to do with standing up to someone. I began to grow my power.”

“I’d believed that in order to do what I was afraid of, I had to get rid of the fear first, but that turned out to be only an idea, not the truth. You have to do something two hundred times before the fear will disperse. Are you still afraid of something? Just do it again. Do it again. Do it again.”

I have practiced Forrest Yoga sporadically throughout my yoga explorations. My favorite yoga classes have been the ones in which instructors lead me to new territories of not only body, but of mind and life. Contrary to what it may seem (since I always seem eager to rearrange my schedule so that I can attend yoga classes), yoga has always been torturous for me. I am still terrified and nervous whenever I step into the yoga studio. I still feel like I might pass out every time I’m twisted into an asana with some creative name. It feels miraculous when I finally reach savasana, an ironed-out, satisfied heap on the ground. I don’t think it’s cliche to say that every single class is a facing of my fears. I have written briefly about my running journey, and though I’ve run half marathons, I still feel like I must prepare myself like a warrior whenever I stand at mile 0, even if it is only to conquer a 2 mile jog.

I am also reading Cheryl Strayed’s “Wild”, and I do believe that the physical journey combines so closely and intensely with the spiritual. I think about how impossible it seems that my past is littered with journeys up mountains and across glaciers and tiger leaping gorges. I think about how I arrived here, and how the days are steps up to a destination, and that there will be days where I feel like I can’t take another.fucking.step, but when we arrive in a clearing at sunset, when we break bread with strangers or old friends, when we stop and make camp at points throughout the hike, isn’t this what they meant when they emphasized the journey? We all seem to arrive at existential crises, but I remind myself that this path is our purpose.

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