Meet yoga instructor @toritheyogist sharing her #yogasavedmylife story with us. These are her words

"I was raped in 2012 by a friend I was traveling with. It took me almost 9 months to get the courage to break away from the situation & 7 months after I left to confront him via email about the abuse. It took me 2 years to finally tell a trained psychologist & 4 1/2 years from the time it happened to finally gain the courage to tell the police

During all of that time - I felt like a leaf in the wind. Or perhaps a more accurate description would be that I felt like a dead body being tossed between raging waves & a sharp rocky cliff in the ocean. Hell, I was so dissociated from my body & my life in every single way possible. I thought that there was no coming back from this ever

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During the 9 months I had been traveling with him, I had been dealing with such horrible dissociation, depersonalization & derealization. I couldn’t think & never really spoke much. Since March of 2012 when it happened - I felt like I had no voice. I felt worse than dead: in a living nightmare & I couldn’t tell anyone

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By the time I was able to finally put the pieces back together, it was late September in Asheville, North Carolina. He had gone away to a meeting. And I was finally alone with myself: free of him. This is where the Yoga comes in 🙏

During the time he was away, I’d wake up before the sun came up while the stars were still out and I would play Seane Corns “Body Prayer” video on repeat. I’d light a candle & let the movements do their work. I practiced twice a day every day. It eventually gave me the strength to tell him to leave & never come back

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I enrolled in the 1,000 hr Teacher training in 2013. I spent every penny I had on it & was back living in my dads basement

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I subsequently discovered Ashtanga. Mysore- It was hard- infuriating sometimes- but it became my daily practice to this day

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Yoga was the thing that allowed me to feel again, it gave me fire to make it through the hardest days of my life. Yoga became my meditation, my strength, my comfort, my grace; my saving grace

But, most importantly yoga gave me ownership over my body again"