Friday, April 13, 2007

Nightmare on Yoga Street

Last night at yoga, the teacher cornered me after class (while standing in line for the shower. Generally, I'm not very chatty with strangers when I am naked, but I was too tired to protest) and asked why I hadn't don't done the breathing exercise at the end of class. I made up some excuse about how I was really dizzy and just couldn't manage and then she gave me the usual blah blah blah about how it would have made me feel better actually and next time I should definitely do it. Just as a side not, everytime someone collapse in pain or exhaustion during class the teacher inevitable tells them to stand up/bend in half/do jumping jacks with the rest of the class because it is just the thing if they are feeling a bit sick/dizzy/tired. So much bullshit.

In fact, that was a big lie. I felt absolutely fine at the end of class yesterday. But I have noticed that every time we get to that last bit of the class where we are slowing down and stretching, the part where everyone should be really zen, that is when I go postal. I suddenly become irrationally angry. Every time during that last 15 minutes that the teacher announces a new pose, I want to scream and shout no, like she is trying to purposely irritate me by prolonging the class, when I know perfectly well that there is a set series of poses that we do every single time. And yet, I can't help myself. By the time we get to the very last exercise, which is this funny breathing thing, I am practically spitting nails. So, I guess it would be fair to say that I am not getting the full benefit of the meditivative aspect of yoga.

Actually, I think that this might be very normal. I was forced into reading a back issue of Psychology magazine last time we spent the weekend in the country with B's parents (it was either Psychology or the French version of AARP magazine. Tough choice.) and I read an article about a man who did a meditation retreat that required the participants to spend entire days sitting still, in silence. He told how the critical moment was one day when he had been meditating for several hours, letting thoughts and emotions wash over him, when suddenly he was consumed by this desire to destroy eveything and everyone around him. He imagined killing the man breathing heavily next to him, and the violence of it all shocked him, since he was a person who was incredibly calm and even passive in his daily life. He eventually realized that it was only in deep relaxation and meditation that he left himself feel the stress and anger that he had always tried to ignore or push aside. I probably would have forgotten all about the article, but I realized yesterday as I was walking away from class that maybe there was a sort of link with my bad bad attitude towards those last few minutes of class and this guy. Maybe I am so relaxed that I lose the ability to control my temper the way I normally would and its actually a good sign that I am so irritated because it proves that I am really getting alot of the other 75 minutes of the class. If you can't tell, I'm trying to put a good spin on this, just because I feel so silly about it.

I'm going to have behave really well the next few classes especially. I was at Ella's music group this morning, telling all the other moms how great I felt with my new exercise regime and ended up convincing someone to do a few trial classes. I fear that any crazy outbursts now would be the makings of some really juicy playground gossip ("I heard she is on drugs!" "Well I heard that her husband had her committed." "Well, I heard that she has been banned from Tuesday morning playgroup!" etc)


Anonymous said...

This is too funny, but I totally get it. I thought I was the only one. I hate that part of the class, when I feel myself getting ready to scream or strangle the teacher. Sort of defeats the purpose the the exercise I know, but it frustrates the hell out of me.
I am taking your advice about crash, I never thought of that. Once she heals and gets the cast off, we are signing up. Thanks

valeriachachacha said...

I really notice the anger when I haven't been going to yoga regularly which makes it really hard to get back into it after I fall off the horse. So I asked my friend who is a yogini (yoga teacher-in-training) if it was normal and she explained that it's the tension and negative energy releasing itself from your body. So it's on the way out, it's very normal, and it is part of what makes yoga so cathartic. Isn't it scary to think that all the other people in class are just as angry as you are?!

Nicole said...

I have noticed that there is group "Argh!" when the next pose is announced- its not just me. But I thought maybe I was the ringleader and it was my ornery breathing that was egging everyone else on. Well, if what you say is true, than I take no resposibility. Empty water bottles and soggy towels will be a-flyin' tomorrow.