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live the lesson

They say what's yours will find you.

I took my first ballet class at the ripe age of 6, walked out and told my mom to get her money back. I wasn't trying to "paint rainbows" with my arms or skip around with my hands on my hips. What 6 year old's have time for that?! Nope. Not for me.

I vaguely remember my first yoga class. It passed at a glacial pace... not quite a workout, too much movement for a meditation... probably spent savasana running through my to-do list so I could at least feel productive for Pete's sake. Wasn't my thing.

Remember the glory days of High School?! Decorating lockers... prom date drama and measured intellect by death of SATs? I don't. Not in the stars for Shelb. I couldn't get out fast enough... graduated early and dove headfirst into my career.


Fast forward 20+ years ... memory-swipe through my history as a professional ballerina, a Yoga-obsessed student/teacher and a University alumni/education-advocate. Perhaps you see a common thread ...a certain try, try again, stick-to-itiveness with a humbling side of, eat my words.

Let's be honest: We don't always know how things, people, stories or experiences will come back to teach us important lessons about ourselves.

2020 has gone from a year of "perfect vision" to (*God-willing*) a year of hopeful hindsight.

We are living an important lesson about ourselves.

What's yours will find you. The good, the bad... the facts, the fiction... all wound up in the shape of people, paths, first drafts and final chapters.

At Columbia, they encouraged us to "distill" our notes from lecture by reviewing key take-aways and re-writing the important bits with a steadfast dedication to not missing a thing. Wasn't my style. I mean, of course I took notes... with a side of pride that the significant information would stick—but who honestly has time to distill and re-write and let marinate new knowledge?

Come here, I'll tell you who. A WORLD of humans that have been forcefully slowed down by a pandemic. A globe of potential change-makers sitting at home, with more time than ever to track their footsteps, question their habits, re-envision their contribution to a healthier, happier more balanced way of life and living...

Now's the time to eat our words, digest our actions, and map out a more *sustainable* diet with which to live this lesson.

...Yea ok but where do I even start? Fair Q.

Dig into your memories for a time/person/place/flavor that didn't quite land with you the first time around. Sit with it for two long breaths. . .

Re-member the moment you decided to give it another go, that time you trusted a gut instinct to try it again, to leave room for magic. Marvel at your capacity to see/taste/try something old, anew—the momentum with which you humbled your ego for just long enough, that you admit to actually enjoying ...that time you rose with the sun, returned to that city, made your own dinner, read instead of watched yourself to sleep... See where I'm going?

It's all in there, right there inside. Deep down in the muddied cauldron of your inner-knowing: give it a stir and see what change, potential, promise rises to the top.

You might just surface a will to get out of your own way, to be the change, to live so loudly, that what's yours will most definitely find you.

And that's enough.

p.s. so are you.


*Pictured is my favorite, Lotus Mudra. In Yoga, we offer this symbolic shape to represent a powerful lesson taught by lotus flowers: These blossoms emerge from the depths of dirty pond water, reaching for the light; a root-to-rise symbol of purity and heart-opening. Just, too, can bloom where you're planted.

Winks, sips tea.

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