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Learning to Breathe Again through Yoga

“Mom, has ovarian cancer. It’s bad”, my sister was crying and was with my mom at the hospital and I needed to break the news to my dad. He was of course devastated. I literally cried all night. Then I went to work to help care for my mom.

“Tiffany’s pregnant” my best friend broke this news to me about my 15 year old daughter, because she couldn’t bear to tell me herself. We were 5 hours away from home. The news brought my strong husband to his knees and came three months after my mom’s cancer diagnosis. All I could think about is the changes happening in my baby’s body and I needed to get to her and take care of her.

My mother-in-law's lung cancer diagnosis came 6 months later. I had my hands full, working full time, caring for my mother, mother-in-law and now daughter.

Right after Preston was born, I was laid off from my job. My mom passed away after a 3 year battle with both breast and ovarian cancer and my mother-in-law passed away a year and half later. I was exhausted, overweight, depressed, anxious and having digestion problems.

I watched my mom take her last breath. I watched my grandson take his first breath and I watched my mother-in-law struggle to breathe and then take her last breath. I was now at a point where I couldn’t catch my own breath.

Most of my life I have been positive and optimistic. But at this point, I was lost. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I began to hear that meditation could help stress. I started looking to the internet for information on how to meditate. Before long meditation began to feel like a vacation from my stress and I looked forward to the quiet, alone time. I began to breathe deeper with a new appreciation for the breath. I was beginning to feel lighter in body and spirit. I then decided that it was time to move my sluggish body. I started a home yoga practice, not wanting to be embarrassed at a yoga studio, but pretty quickly decided that I needed to teach others what I had learned. It kind of seemed like a crazy idea that an almost 50 year old, overweight grandmother could teach yoga.

I started researching “how to become a yoga teacher” and it was suggested that one should have a consistent daily yoga practice for at least a year before thinking about teacher training. This is where I began. In the mean time I began to look into yoga schools, for when I was ready, and found the Shannon Caldwell and her Purple Lotus Yoga Teacher Training. The supportive words on her website spoke directly to me that anyone can teach yoga.

I knew that this is what I wanted to teach, even though I was afraid to speak in public, was out of shape and my confidence was at an all-time low. In the first moments of Shannon's class, I knew I had found the right training to teach and support me. I would leave each session feeling a wonderful high and confidence. Sometimes my confidence would wane, but then each time I got back into class with my fellow students, my cup would be filled again.

I graduated from the 200 hour training in 2015. I am now close to completing my 500 hour training. My favorite classes to teach are restorative yoga, yin yoga and beginning meditation. I currently teach private yoga and I am so excited to now be part of the Sacred Space to be able to teach to larger groups.

With yoga, I have learned to love myself, to create space in my mind and body which has expanded my world. Yoga brought me clarity to realize my passion and follow my heart. Yoga helped me breathe again.

Stacy Hobbs will be teaching a "Begin Your Yoga Journey Mini Retreat" this coming Sunday, August 18th, 1-6 pm. Cost is $49. Click here to learn more.

Shannon Caldwell's Purple Lotus Yoga Teacher Training will begin a new 200 hour certification course starting September 7-8. Click here to learn more.

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