When I was born, I was given a box.
This box contained all the hopes, dreams, and expectations of those that came before me. This box contained what I was supposed to believe, how I was supposed to behave, how I was supposed to look, what my role was supposed to be in life, and all that I could do for others.
I was supposed to fit and live inside that box. I carried the box with me everywhere and everyone added their intentions, causing the box to grow. The box became so full that my dreams could not fit. The box became so heavy that I began to shrink until I finally collapsed under its weight.
As I lay on the ground in despair, I wondered if anyone would come to help me. No one arrived.
I had always been the one to be strong for others and never learned how to be strong for myself. I wondered how I could be strong for myself and dedicate time to myself without it being stolen from me. I picked myself off the floor and looked at my full, color coded, calendar and saw all the time that I dedicated to everyone else, yet none for myself. I started small by scheduling a bath, then a yoga class, a meditation class, and a book club. I dragged the box to every appointment, but I was able to carry it. I was feeling better and I needed more for myself. I was considering taking classes to become a yoga instructor, just to commit time for myself. The next day, a new kind of training presented itself. As one who as always believed in signs, I applied and was accepted.
As I dedicated myself to the training, I felt that life offered so many obstacles to keep me from it. I was determined to find a way rather than find excuses. I arrived to every class, completed every assignment, and met myself on the mat with every practice, always bringing my box with me. Through all of that, a flame was lit inside of me. The flame grew into a mesmerizing fire with an etheric glow. The embers appeared as sweat and tears. The box was destroyed by the fire. I emerged from it free to be myself and live my dreams.
This transformation cannot take place without safety and support of others that have experienced the same destruction and growth. I immediately felt that when I was literally greeted with open arms at my first visit. It was the first time that I ever saw women being free and supporting others to be free as well. I knew that this was the place, and these were the people to help me destroy all the expectations of others that had been keeping me from living since I had merely been existing for years. I keep returning to help others and watch the beauty in their transformation.