Cute Shoes (and a little story about excommunication from yoga)

I re-joined the gym.  The last time I was at the gym, I had breasts which were just days away from becoming a thing of the past.  Running on the treadmill those days prior to January 29, 2013, I had NO idea what the next 2 years would hold.  At that time, I was in really good shape — ideal weight, running a few times a week and practicing yoga at least 4 times a week.  I was strong, toned, fit.  Yoga was a HUGE part of my life.  The studio was my second home and my fellow yoginis were second family (also known as a kula).  Then the surgeries started, along with healing complications and a frozen shoulder, leaving me mostly sedentary and unable to do anything physical, including yoga, for the better part of a year & a half.

It’s often said that you will be surprised by the people who disappear when you get cancer.  It shocked me that it was my dear yoga kula that disappeared.  When I had my mastectomy, they sent flowers and cards, and that was really nice.  Following the mastectomy, I had 4 more surgeries and lots of complications, pain, anguish…you know.  During that time, two (I repeat, TWO) members of my yoga family kept in regular contact with me (by regular, I mean a text about once a month from one; the other does my hair, so I saw her frequently).  They would ask my husband how I was doing, so perhaps they thought that was the same as reaching out to me.  My “teacher” told me that the kula would be there when I was ready to come back.

I went back to yoga about 8 months or so ago, but it’s just not the same.  I jokingly tell other students not to get cancer, lest they be excommunicated from the kula.  I am angry at yoga.  By that I don’t mean I’m angry DURING yoga (although sometimes I am); I mean that I am angry AT yoga.  Who gets mad at yoga?  A couple weeks ago, I cut the cord and ended my studentship at this studio.  I felt a sense of relief.  Righteous relief.

As I walked out of that yoga studio for that last time, I didn’t have much of a plan in place…I still take a ballet class once a week, and there a couple of other yoga studios in town I will check out.  In the meantime, I realized I just need to get my body moving!  The other day I bought my new running shoes (really cute with hot pink laces) and re-joined my old gym.  And later that day, my little one and I went to the gym.  I deposited her in the kids’ center and then got on the elliptical machine.  Five minutes in, I thought I was going to die, but after that, it was glorious!  I’m not gonna lie…a lot of the time I was there I was thinking, “the last time I was here, I had breasts.”

When I started writing this post, I had no intention of discussing all the yoga stuff.  What I really wanted to say is that I re-joined the gym, and I got really cute running shoes.  And also, when my 8-year old saw me in my really cute running shoes, she said, “Mommy, you’re really working those shoes”.

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2 thoughts on “Cute Shoes (and a little story about excommunication from yoga)

  1. What a fabulous post. Thank you so much! I got breast cancer when my kids were 3 and 6, and being so ill on chemo when I should’ve been looking after them was awful. I only had a lumpectomy (which came with complications too, as I had a massive bout of MRSA) and, over the course of treatment (incl. radiotherap) put on nearly 2 stone in weight. I was heavier that I had been 9 months pregnant with either of my kids! Naively I presumed the weight would just fall off, and my body go back to normal, but it’s only now, that I am training for my third walking marathon (the MoonWalk in aid of breast cancer), that I am sloooooowly beginning to see a change. I have been feeling so disheartened lately, as I have been finding the training tough, but your post just motivated me. Thank you! ❤

    • I wish you the best of luck! I have learned to look at these things in terms of baby steps. Seriously, I want to get on the treadmill for 30 minutes and see instant results, but I really have learned that these things may happen slowly. So whatever you can do today is better than doing nothing. Also, it’s not “just” a lumpectomy. This deal is real no matter what treatment we are faced with.

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