My journey to Gentle Warrior

Updated: Apr 3, 2020

I am so excited to be writing this my first blog on my new website!

Welcome to Gentle my name is Sarah.

If you had told me 4 years ago that I would be writing this I would never have believed you. I was at such a low point in my life. Suffering from mental illness going from crisis to crisis, medication to medication never quite getting out of the hole I found myself in. I had no sense of self worth, I was in constant fear. I struggled to get out of my house and I couldn’t be the person I wanted and need to be for my family.

Then 4 years ago I started working with an incredible teacher who showed me that there was a different way and that I had the power to change and stop being a victim of my own circumstances. I started practicing yoga and meditation everyday and within 7 months my life had completely changed. Working with my medical team I slowly came off all the medication I was on, got discharged from the mental health team, I quit my job and started training in holistic therapies and entered a new chapter in my life.

From there I haven’t looked back, the road has not been easy and along the way I have had to face some pretty scary battles and learn how to work with difficult emotions and the effects these have on my body. I have also had to learn a whole new way of being, to offer myself love and compassion, work with pleasure instead of self-punishment. This behaviour has been very difficult to change.

In doing all this work I have gotten stronger, more empowered, braver within myself bit by bit and so here I am, doing work that I absolutely love and now writing about it doing it. For so long my soul felt buried and forgotten and now I feel it beating alongside me in my work and my everyday, when I teach classes, give massages, or one-to-one sessions.

I am grateful beyond words for my journey getting me to this point, for my family, friends and teachers who have walked beside me supporting me, enabling me to break free and now do what I feel called to do.

THANK YOU I have a favourite poem, Love it so much I have designed my current classes around it, it explains this journey in such a heartfelt way please enjoy…

How I became a Warrior

By Jeff Foster Once, I ran from fear So Fear controlled me. Until I learned to hold fear like a newborn. Listen to it, but not give in. Honour it, but not worship it. Fear could not stop me anymore. I walked with courage into the storm. I still have fear , But it does not have me. Once , I was ashamed of who I was. I invited shame into my heart. I let it burn. It told me , “im only trying to protect your vulnerability”. I thanked shame dearly, And stepped into life anyway, Unashamed, with shame as a lover. Once I had great sadness Buried deep inside. Invited it to come out and play. I wept oceans. My tear ducts ran dry. And I found joy right there. Right at the core of my sorrow. It taught me how to love. Once I had anxiety. A mind that wouldn’t stop Thoughts that wouldn’t be silent. So I stopped trying to silence them. And I dropped out of the mind, and into the earth. Into the mud. Where I was held strong like a tree, unshakable, safe. Once, anger burned in the depths. I called anger into the light of myself. I felt its shocking power. I let my heart pound and my blood boil. Listened to it finally. And it screamed, “respect yourself fiercely now”. “Speak your truth with passion” “Say no when you mean no” “walk your path with courage”! “let no one speak for you!” Anger became an honest friend. A truthful guide. A beautiful wild child. Once loneliness cut deep, I tried to distract and numb myself. I ran to people and places and things. Even pretended I was happy But soon I could not run anymore. And I tumbled into the heart of loneliness. And I died and was reborn into exquisite solitude and stillness. That connected me to all things. So I was not lonely ,but alone with ALL life. My heart one with all other hearts. Once I ran from difficult feelings. Now they are my advisors, confidants, friends, and they all belong and have dignity. I am sensitive, soft, fragile, my arms wrapped around all my inner children. And in my sensitivity, power. In my fragility an unshakable presence. In the depths of my wounds, in what I had named “darkness” I found a blazing light that guides me now in battle. I became a warrior when I turned towards myself and started listening.

(Photography is by Katrina Shepherd)

Gentle Warrior offers Forrest Yoga classes, one-to-one sessions, private classes and holistic treatments in the Lancaster, Caton and Lune Valley area.

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