Say YES to life

The following is an excerpt from my book, which I am writing as a memoir about my journey of awakening.


India is a wild and sacred place that possesses the Great Mother archetype everywhere. She heals, she destroys, she holds space for great suffering and she knows the unknowable. Every time I visit, I cry when I arrive (out of fear), and then I cry even harder when I leave, as I know I am leaving a part of myself behind. When in India, I am held in the womb of the Great Mother.


One day, as a rickshaw was driving me to practice with Pattabhi Jois (founder of Ashtanga Yoga), I passed by an Indian woman, who was selling watermelons by the roadside. Behind her was her community, a series of tents made from torn sheets and sticks. Her body language listless with defeat, this woman was stuck in her caste and she knew it. With sadness lingering in her eyes, she conveyed a powerful and intentional message to me. Like a disciplinary mother, she was telling me to go for it, to be the voice for all the women in the world like her, who are caught in the fishnet and can’t swim to freedom.


I knew in that moment that I was the only thing holding me back from living my life to its fullest. I had the freedom to study whatever I wanted, I had the freedom to do the work I wanted, and I had the freedom to have my own family, if I so chose. But that was the point, I had to choose. And so I chose to say yes to all of life’s opportunities. I made a commitment to myself that my own fear and insecurities would never be strong enough to deter me from my life’s mission. It wasn’t just my mission anymore; I was representing her as well, the woman selling watermelons.


To walk our own authentic path, all we are called to do is say YES to life’s opportunities. What are you saying YES to for 2012?