For a number of years now I have written a blog post in which I share some of my thoughts about the year that has just passed as well as my teaching focus for the year to come. It is a kind of public diary entry that I share with you, my community, so that you might have an idea of where I am at and how my teaching work is evolving as well as what has been happening for me on a more personal level.
2018 was a year of unexpected challenge and moments of great beauty. Some of the highlights were traveling to Quebec (the province of my birth) in order to re-connect with my paternal family whom I have been estranged from for 38 years, watching my husband race his motorcycle at the Mission Speedway, visiting my in-laws in England, traveling to Ireland for the first time and going back to India with some of my dearest friends.
The challenges I faced were all of a deeply personal nature and many of them cannot be shared in a public forum but all of them were related to family relationships and so struck at the very core of my life.
My 19 year old child came out as transgender at the beginning of the year and supporting her in her transition has been all consuming, forcing me to pull back at times from my teaching work in order to be more present at home. I have learned so much through this process and as a family we have been brought even closer together, however it has not been easy. Every transgender person has their own story and my daughters’ story is not mine to share, but what I can say is that the decision to transition is not an easy one and “coming out” (to oneself, to one’s family & friends) is only the very beginning of a very long and often difficult journey. As a mother, all I want to do is make my child’s path in life easeful, but of course, that is not how this life works. Much of my personal learning this year had to do with coming to terms with the ways in which I can be of service to those I love and the ways in which I must simply support them in finding their own way through their very personal challenges.
Many of you have reached out to me to offer your love and support during this past year and I thank you for that so I am happy to tell you that Nova (my daughter’s name and the one she was given at birth) is now eleven months into hormone replacement therapy and starting her second semester at university. It has been a huge year for her and she is of course incredibly brave in so many ways, though she is often consumed with fear as you can imagine. The first year at university is hard enough, imagine doing it while in the first stages of a gender transition? As a family, we deeply appreciate the kindness so many of you have offered us and it gives me a lot of faith in the essential goodness of people.
Because my personal life took precedence this past year I ended up pulling back on many of the new creative projects I had hoped to launch in 2018, but I still managed to facilitate many great offerings of which I am proud of including –
- My Professional Yoga Teacher business coaching course which supported close to 200 teachers in digging deeper into the business side of their teaching career
- My 13 Moon Circle which has been running for its second year and is still one of my favourite things I’ve ever created
- The creation of my Teachable school where I am continuing to load up all the online courses and content I have created over the years
- My new website, which I could not have done without the help of Bree Prosser of November Wild and Cloud9 Marketing in Whistler
- My third retreat to India, which was beyond magical. I still struggle to put into words what I got from this experience and I know I will grieve when autumn of 2019 rolls around and I am not heading off to Rishikesh once again
- My Fire & Flow Vinyasa intensive which I created as an alternative to my Skill in Action training for those that love vinyasa yoga
- Many workshops, local events and gatherings all of which were focused around the topics I love such as seasonal magic, wildcrafting, kitchen medicine, and personal sadhana
When I take the time to write this out I can see that in fact, I accomplished a huge amount in 2018, even though it felt like all I did was cancel events and pull back. This has taught me a lot and so in 2019 I will continue to keep to a simplified teaching schedule and will be very discerning about what I say yes to.
Here is a sneak preview of what I have coming up for you this year-
- I will run my Professional Yoga Teacher program once again this January. I am only committing to offering it once per year since I am so heavily involved in the weekly coaching aspect of it.
- My 13 Moons Circle will start up once again on March 21st of this year (registration will open on March 1st) and will be a more streamlined version of what I have offered in the past with some fun new changes.
- The Witches Year: Seasonal Magic Series will be a new series of eight stand-alone online workshops offered throughout the wheel of the year. These will be a blend of yogic practice, personal ritual suggestions, tarot, kitchen medicine and more. The first one will be offered on Beltaine (May 1st 2019)
- I also plan to launch a series of online history & philosophy workshops for yoga teachers along with some that are focused on teaching technique. These will be based on the work I have shared in classrooms for years.
- My advanced teaching intensives (Fire & Flow & Skill in Action) will only be offered once each this year as I am attempting to travel less. Fire & Flow happens in January and Skill in Action will be in autumn (dates TBA).
- I’ll be at the Victoria Yoga Conference once again because I love it so much! This year I’ll be offering two workshops and one full day intensive for yoga teachers.
- For those of you that wanted a local retreat with me I’m super excited to announce that I’ll be at Hollyhock Sept 25th-29th offering a special autumn equinox retreat. Registration is now open and early bird rates apply until Jan 31st!
- I’ll also be teaching a module in the Revolution Yoga 300 Hour Teacher Training in Nelson BC
- Workshops I am still in the planning stages of with my friends and colleagues include a weekend retreat on Saltspring Island in celebration of Beltaine and early summer beauty as well as a running & yoga workshop here in Pemberton this March. As soon as I have these finalized they will be posted on my website.
- And finally, you can expect more of my one-day retreats throughout the year so stay tuned for those if you are local to my area.
On a personal level, my focus for this year is to continue nourishing relationships with my family while also prioritizing my own health and wellness, something I have not done enough of in the past seven years or so as my business required me to travel more. I have signed up for three trail running races this year and am super excited to be running my first marathon with my husband in June (a first for both of us).
I will continue to deepen my relationship with the land around me through gardening and wildcrafting and will maybe evenstart to share a bit more of my homemade apothecary products with the public. Who knows, maybe I’ll even try out a Farmers Market or two!
Mostly I want my attention to be focused around re-connecting to the magic of my life through simple rhythms and sustainable routines. Since 2012 my life has been way too busy ( in the best ways) but now I am ready to slow down a bit and spend a bit more quality (with myself) and with my family.
Again I want to thank you all for being part of my community, my creativity is inspired by my relationships with each of you and I do not take your time and attention for granted. I promise to continue to share work that is meaningful to me and which I hope will inspire your own journeys of self-discovery.
Wishing you all the best for 2019!