After a three month hiatus, I ventured back into the Bikram room yesterday. I plotted and planned my return. Get up and eat a light breakfast. Easy on the coffee. Water, water, water. Go at 1pm so I don't suffer the am stiffness. (I hate morning practices! I am an afternoon/evening yogi through and through). I arrived at Bikram Westside 40 mins early and was happy to see Noel was teaching. I hadn't looked up the schedule on purpose. I just wanted to show up and let everything else fall into place. Noel was happy to see me and I her. I changed and put my mat down. Sweat trickled down the inside of my tank top as I was smoothing my yogi toes out over my mat. Oh vey, I had forgotten what the Bikram room feels like! Finally class starts and I stand up, nervously trying to place my feet properly. I look at my reflection in the mirror and it looks foreign to me. Ten pounds heavier than last time I was in the room, I see my generous curves reflected back at me, tank top covering my sports bra. Yes, I used to wear yoga pants and sports bra only. That won't be happening anytime soon. It's not what other people think either, it's truly that I cannot bear to look at it myself right now. The tank top will come off when I am ready, but who knows when that will be.
Breathing starts and my brain was doing a happy dance. My stomach started to flip flop with joy. I actually smiled during breathing, which is sorta awkward as you can imagine. After eagle I felt like "ya boyz and girlz, let's get this party started!!" Then the one legged balancing series commenced and my excitement diminished as I realized I could not keep my knee locked. Yes, I still had the stamina and most of the flexibility to get into postures but No, I could not hold them as my friggin knee would not stay locked. It hurt. It burned. I had to sort of shuffle from foot to foot, shaking out each leg after each set. My knees ached so badly. By the time we got to triangle I realized my hips were too tight to really get down there and form that L with my leg. Then by fixed firm, the tight aching knees said "no more!" and I sat there, upright, trying to work my butt down and it wouldn't touch. I opened my knees wider, but to no avail. I didn't get frustrated with any of this. I just took note of it so I could rejoice later when it starts to get better. And get better it will. This I know from three years of Bikram experience. I was so happy to be there that during a savasana in spine series little tears leaked out of my eye. I couldn't help it. All sorts of emotions bubbled up to the surface and my heart and soul were singing with joy to be there. The last three months have felt like a walking coma, but coming back to Bikram was truly an awakening. Yes, this is what it feels like to be alive! No, this doesn't happen in the gym, or running on the street. Those feel good, but they don't wake me up and fill me with joy like Bikram does.
I'm going back tonight. I feel like a little kid, tugging on her mothers skirt with excitement. I can hardly contain myself.