Editor’s Note – this blog post is the first in a series of Artemis Yoga student profiles. We love our students who come to their mats from all walks of life to practice yoga with us. It is with gratitude that we share a little bit more about the community they are creating here in East Watertown.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
I was born and raised in Wisconsin, and then I moved to Kentucky for 12 years. Last fall I moved to Massachusetts and actually settled in Watertown just about the time Artemis was settling in too! Currently I am a nanny for my career, although my goal is to go back to school for my second bachelors degree to become a NICU (neonatal) nurse. Outside of work, I absolutely love to dance— Argentine tango, salsa, and bachata are my favorites, but I do all Latin and ballroom.
When and why did you begin practicing yoga?
When I was living in Kentucky I played rugby and other sports, and I also tried yoga for the first time. It never stuck, though. I never felt like the studios were very welcoming or the poses were very practical—they were all very difficult and there was not a lot of direction on how to do them. I would do some basic twenty-minute yoga or Pilates videos at the gym I was going to, but I didn’t have a consistent practice like I do now.
What brought you to Artemis?
Living in Watertown, I naturally just walked by. When I saw the newcomer special with 30 days of yoga for $29, I thought I might give yoga another try. I mean, it’s basically $1 a day, it’s close to where I live, if I came even two times it would be worth it. And if I didn’t like it, well, $29 is what? The cost of a shirt these days?
What have you learned/how have you grown from practicing at Artemis?
That’s such a good question. I have grown in so many ways. Personally I have grown in confidence. I’m already a confident person, but I took Lisa’s Level 1/Level 2 class when I first started coming here, and I remember I couldn’t do an up-dog. And my instinct was to be defeatist—to say to myself, you can’t even do an up-dog you’re never going to be able to do it. But I have learned not to be discouraged. Your practice can vary from day to day, just like your life! It’s about accepting that, and breathing through it.
What is/was most challenging about yoga?
For me it’s concentrating and being focused on my mat when I come here. Because we’re so busy and consumed all the time, it’s hard not to always be distracted. But Artemis is the perfect environment, and reminder really, to foster relaxation and self-care.
What is most rewarding?
EVERYTHING! 🙂 Physically, emotionally. I’ll come in here and be super stressed and I’ll just tear up…because I’m doing a Warrior 2 and feel so strong!! Those emotions overcome you. And being able to have the safe space of Artemis to do that is incredible. I have lost 28 pounds since I started yoga at Artemis. I never feel judged coming in here. All the instructors are so good about modifications. They’re not just here instructing a class, but connecting with you on a personal level.
Which classes have you been attending recently?
Mostly level 1 and 2 classes in the mornings.
What would you want others to know about practicing here?
Definitely the welcoming feel. Everybody is always so friendly. Try out the different classes and levels. No matter if you love one class more than another, everybody’s goal is the same: to help you find the practice that’s right for you. It doesn’t feel institutionalized here. I have made amazing connections with teachers. At the end of it all, you walk out the door and you know you are cared for.