"I was homeless as a teen, kicked out of my house & moved around staying with friends for years. I joined the Army at 18 to get out of the rough situation I was in" . "I knew the army would be hard & I was bound to be deployed but it was the best option I saw to get me out of the living situation I was in . . I deployed at 19 in October of 2007 to Baghdad Iraq. My deployment was rough we had a lot go wrong, I lost my best friend & had a back injury that caused me a lot of pain, & this was when yoga came into my life. A friend in the US sent me a care package with a few yoga books & a mat, strap & blocks . Being limited on what I could do due to my injury I was allowed to do yoga for PT most days & my love grew from there I found some relief in mind & body while it did not completely make everything go away it helped me cope with my injury & trying times . Coming home in 2009 & getting out was even harder: learning to live as what seemed like a totally different person. I had PTSD & my life was a wreck they didn’t teach us how to come home just prepped us to deploy. I again spent a few years homeless even moving across the country to California for a year trying to find my place in the world . I started seeking out classes to learn yoga better & attended many classes and workshops & continued my own practice at home & moved back to Tennessee in 2011, still continuing my practice but mostly my own practice as I could not afford studios . In 2014 I met my boyfriend who helped me get back on my feet since then I have been working on finding myself & working on my yoga practice & learning about meditation . Today I continue my practice and attend classes and workshops when I can! I have started saving to become a yoga teacher. l plan to become a yoga teacher to help fellow veterans & others dealing with similar issues, or even just to be there to help anyone in need & let people know that they are enough & worthy of the best life" 💚 Laura .