Being a Teacher

I watched tonight a lecture from Yogi Bhajan on the matter of being a Teacher, as part of my yoga teacher training.

It really got to me, down deep and all throughout…

The meditation at the end was 11 minutes of a certain exercise and mantra, which began as easy and became very difficult by the end of it (as is often the case)….

… but I broke down in tears for the first few minutes of the meditation, as my body and mind began to process further and to accept what Yogi Bhajan had said in the lecture.

It was so powerful for me, I think, because I am not only just doing this yoga teacher training, but have found myself already being a school teacher these past several years… I am not just here to be a yoga teacher, it seems, but to be a Teacher through and through.

And that scared me.

I think it still does.

Post-a-day 2018

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Workouts, Teachers, Tears, & Careers

I honestly don’t know how to describe today. It was good and bad and wonderful and horrible and surprising and loads of other stuff, too. I’m not sure there’re real words for it, even. And not in a bad way, of course. Just in an indescribable way. You know?

I guess the best way to describe it is by saying that today was filled with love.

I found out on Tuesday, that one of the teachers at my gym was leaving at the end of the month (i.e. this Friday).  I was rather distraught upon learning the news.  However, I wasn’t too surprised about it – she had always seemed like a superstar in our kind of gym.  We are casual, everyday family, exercising together and having fun.  She is one of the most fit, beautiful, sexy women I have ever known.  And her enthusiasm and real-ness are both top notch.

She has this one class that is insanely difficult, though totally simple, and today was the last time that she she would be teaching it.  Afterward, she kind got a little red-eyed after one lady hugged her after our high fives (she always starts and ends that particular class with enthusiastic hang tens).  When she was saying a thank-you to everyone, I started to redden around the eyes, too.  And, when she started to talk to me while I was finishing putting away my weights and bands, I just went full-out crying, and we hugged multiple times, both crying and saying thank you (in Japanese, of course) to each other.

The gym won’t and can’t be the same without her, though I know it will still be good.  In the midst of my depression, this gym, and especially this teacher’s classes, were the main thing that started me on my road to becoming myself again, and they now have been a fixture in my life.  I have never before scheduled activities around a gym schedule, nor preferred to spend hours at the gym on my own instead of, well, doing anything else.  The gym was my life for a while, and it was what helped me to be healthy enough to find more to be part of my life.  And, now that this teacher and her classes are going to be gone, I can now spend more time doing those other things that I want to be part of my life (because, up to now, I have tended to cancel other activities when they coincided with her classes, because I so loved her classes).

Plus, at some point, I am going to be leaving myself, so I needn’t be too upset at her leaving first.  But that isn’t exactly the point.  Tangent-ish.  Anyway…

The group gave her flowers, and we took a group photo with her, and various folks were crying (or perhaps it was just she and I), and it was super sweet.  

When I asked for the group photo, I got to find out that she is going to be studying instead now – she wants to study physical training and English, and working here keeps her from having the time to do that.  So she’s giving up one love for a greater one. And, when she asked about when I’m leaving Japan, she was all surprised and distraught that it’s so soon (four-ish months), but was really excited for my own plans for what’s next in my life.  She could relate to how I felt about wanting to pursue the things most important to me, even if they seem a bit abnormal or crazy.

Then we took a few selfies together, at her request, even finding better lighting to make sure they were good ones, and then we hugged some more before a final goodbye.  She didn’t ask for solo pictures with anyone else – just the one big group picture.

All in all, it was awesome.  And, possibly the best part, is how much love I felt.  From me to her and from her to me, there was so much love.  I don’t know lots of Japanese (though I understand a good amount), so I don’t typically start much chit-chat with people, simply because I don’t have the words.  I always would find ways to talk with her – often using English, which often resulted in a fun befuddlement on both sides of the conversation.  She was always hesitant to use English herself, but she usually understood me, and I usually could understand her, so it worked.  However, her hesitation with English made me wonder if it were the English or the Hannah that had her be hesitant.  I always suspected it to be the English, but it wasn’t until today that I really discovered that for sure.  She loves me and I love her.  And I believe I have never cried over any kind of teacher the way I cried over her today after our last class with her.
Post-a-day 2017

 

Unexpected Student Interactions

As a teacher, I have always enjoyed running into my students outside of school.  I’m not sure all of my students enjoy seeing me (I’ve never noticed them ducking and hiding, but it’s totally possible), but a good number of them run up to greet me whenever they see me out in the real world.  Here, in Japan, has not been too different in that sense.  Yes, students are ridiculously shy compared to the US, however, keeping that in mind, students are still, relatively speaking, quite outgoing and excited to see me out in public.  Sometimes that just means the boys smile, blush, and wave at me.  And sometimes it means girls scream my name across the train station (yes, it has happened).  😛  Nonetheless, they always greet me in some way when they notice me, and are happy to see me (trust me; I’ve seen them when they’re unhappy to see someone – they are definitely happy to see me).

Tonight, as my train pulled into the final station, which happened also to be my station, I roused myself from my half-sleep, for which I had had my head leaning semi-comfortably against a partition next to my seat.  Approaching normal consciousness, I notice a face turned towards me over to my left.  When I stand up, I realize that there is a group of boys with that face, and that the face is familiar.  Sure enough, they are students from one of my schools.

I casually waved with a smile, and, walking towards them and the door, asked how they were doing (though, seeing as I was not fully conscious yet, I ended up talking to them in Japanese).  They seemed delighted, and in a goofy sense of the word… and, seeing as this is Japan, they could have been delighted just from seeing me out in public during the school holidays.  Too, though, I might have been dozing on the train with my mouth open, which would have made for a fun spectacle for the boys.  Though the latter is less likely, as I wasn’t ever fully asleep, and I didn’t have drool on me or any other signs of having been sleeping with my mouth gaping, both are entirely possible.

So, who knows?  Perhaps they’ll mention it one day at school next week, and I’ll learn the truth of it all.  Perhaps not.  Nonetheless, I thoroughly enjoyed it all.  The nap included.  😛

 

Post-a-day 2017