Each week that passes, I keep hoping we have reached our limit for 2020. That this is the week we can actually begin living less fearfully, more 'normally' again, and that good news will burst forth. What I have come to realize is this year is ON, full-on, and it's not going to settle down anytime soon. 2020 is not letting us get away with business as usual. 2020 is demanding we all pay attention — closely. 2020 is forcing us to shut up and pay attention. Then, after we listen, learn, and discern, to take all the work we have done on our mats, in our bodies & hearts, and put it to work in our communities. All the personal growth we have been seeking and reaping the benefits from is now saying, 'here we go.' 2020 is demanding payment. 2020 will not go quietly.
For almost 8 years, until the global pandemic hit us in March, we gathered each week at least once a week for an Embody event, free of financial cost. Our events are and will always be offered to break down barriers and create access & unity for ALL people to practice yoga & mindfulness in a welcoming environment; to connect, grow, heal, and feel better. We exist to help people become healthier, happier, and to serve their communities. We all know our mission has two parts: the first 'feel better' & the second 'do good'. By and large, the second part has been harder for many for a myriad of reasons. 2020 is now louder & bigger than my little rallying voice could ever be asking everyone to show up & give back; 2020 is shouting from the streets across America to not only show up but to rise up. Many of us have answered the call in our own ways. Many are still discerning what is the best action step. Both are okay.
I know this is difficult because we may feel alone and disconnected right now after months of being sheltered in place. In California, we are still under quarantine, with no end date in sight. Many of us are fearful of going into public spaces to protest as COVID-19 remains an unseen, yet deadly presence in the air. This is real and legitimate. Personally, I cannot go out and protest in crowds, get on an airplane to rise up with my GR community, or even see four of my five children who are currently living in Michigan. My husband and my daughter have underlying health conditions that make them more vulnerable to the COVID virus. I must be responsible and choose for their wellbeing. I know many of you struggle with similar issues of health, isolation, and frustration. We are being tested and we are forced to make difficult decisions.
If you, like me, are still simmering in fury over more black lives lost from police brutality, we must transform our anger so it does not win. We cannot allow anger to burn us out. The on-going work is to access our emotions (energy in motion) to inspire us into making the world better by using our voices, resources, and actions for those whose voices are not being heard. We cannot ignore things, people, situations, because they make us uncomfortable or do not ‘directly’ impact us. We cannot bury our heads in the sand until the world goes back to normal. It’s not ever gonna happen and I don’t think we want our world the way it used to be. Creating a world of peace, justice, love for all our sisters & brothers, health and systems that work for all of us, not simply those of privilege, is the work to create our new world; a world that works for ALL of us.
What we choose to do individually impacts the collective. Let us take this time to dig deep and ask the hard questions. As we all learn and grow as a nation, we are all called to use our voices, hands, and hearts for good. We can:
For now, please choose one way to make an impact. If you are struggling personally, make it a small, manageable step. Keep watch on the Embody Facebook page for resources and ways to educate, donate, and get involved!
Once we are able to gather again in person, we will assemble in a more unified way. I will keep posting updates as I know them; the world changes quickly. For now, please know you are not alone in your feelings, all of which are valid. Embody will continue to offer Wednesday evening yoga and mindfulness practices on Facebook. It's important to keep taking care of you; the world needs you healthy, strong, and ready to work for change.
Please, email me if you'd like to connect directly. I'd love to hear how you are.
You are all precious. I stand with you, side by side, in peace, love, and justice. I miss you all and cannot wait to hug you again.
“The EmbodyGR community embraces and supports, says ‘yes you can’ when the noisy inner voice says, ‘no you can’t’ – Kari Wilson, Community Member