"Yoga didn't SAVE my life. It's SAVING my life"

Meet Emilie @greenholler sharing her #yogasavedmylife story with us. These are her words 💚

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"I'd sporadically done yoga for as long as I can remember, but it was always connected to my mother. She became a yoga practitioner when I was in high school, which, being an ornery & rebellious teen, I had to reject it out of principle. But she didn't give up trying to get me engaged. When I was in graduate school she took me to India on a yoga retreat. The Iyengar & Ayurveda focused trip awoke an understanding of the benefits of yoga: something that I'd never truly appreciated until that then

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Two years later, I was working as an aid worker in Afghanistan. A visiting consultant teaching yoga to some friends noticed that I "knew what I was doing" & suggested I teach a class after she left. I balked, but then studied as much as I could & started teaching free basic classes to the expat aid worker community in Herat, Afghanistan. When I finally returned to the US, yoga was what allowed me to process all of my challenging overseas experiences, my therapy: let me re-live the good & let go of the bad

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In 2016, my mother passed away after I took care of her during a terrible terminal illness . I felt lost, but within a few days of her passing I had signed up for a YTT in Costa Rica starting 2 weeks later: It was something that she had always wanted to do - she had encouraged me to do. It wasn't easy, but the learning & friendships that I developed there will last a lifetime. Since then, I've started a new job in Niger, West Africa, where I offer a free community yoga class. Expat life in challenging countries is not easy. Life without my mom is especially not easy. But I know that keeping this practice alive & close to my heart keeps her close to me as well

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When I feel alone & overwhelmed & miss my mother, yoga can bring me close to her - it saves my life. She is there in my practice; she is there with me always. When things seem impossible, I get on my mat & start breathing & know that tomorrow is another day 🙏 Emilie "