The Lotus

2020 has been a challenging year for so many. 

Through my hardships it made me stronger and what didn’t break me made me come out swinging. Thus the seedlings of Fight Yoga began to blossom. “The lotus flower blooms most beautifully from the deepest and thickest mud.” – Buddhist Proverb. The murkiest of waters can bring forth change and the beauty of new beginnings, The Lotus! During times of uncertainty your path may be unclear, but if you look inwards you can follow your heart’s guiding light.

This year I lost my mom and best friend four months after she received her heart transplant. A tragic loss of a woman delighted to have a second chance at life with her new heart. Her heart was too big for this world but her light and joy will live on through my teachings. I made a conscious choice that I could either let the grief become all encompassing, or I could tell myself to;

Where do you go when you feel all is lost? I came through the mud and resurfaced with new petals and a new perspective on life. Upon deep contemplative reflection, I told myself I had one choice and that was to continue moving forward on my path. Although uncertain, I knew one thing for sure… that each day spent breathing was a gift.  My mom instilled that value in me and always encouraged me to pick myself up, dust myself off and hold my head up high. So that’s what I did. I worked on proper alignment in yoga, elongating through my spine and standing up nice and tall. I tied in pranayama;  Prana, life force through daily breath-work, into my practice.

I knew that my mom’s legacy needed to live on and  her light needed to be shared with the world. The question I had to ask myself was how? The day she passed, her phone record showed she reached out to six other people to help them and sent words of encouragement. In her final hours of life her candle burned brighter than ever because her true light was a thing of illuminating beauty.

With the news of my mom’s passing, I felt like my breath was knocked out of me. I got hit with a strong force and in true fighting fashion, I didn’t let it keep me down. Dealing with grief during lockdown was very isolating. Fitness has always been a good outlet to help me cope with difficult times. I started thinking of the ways that fitness has helped me to heal and I began brainstorming how I could help spread the love of healing to others. Thus the initial seeds were laid down for Fight Yoga.

Onwards and upwards. This is how Fight Yoga emerged from the darkness and shined brighter than ever before. I truly wanted to end 2020 with a bang! I took control of my destiny by showing others the light at the end of the tunnel. Your true light – Namaste. I received good advice from a friend to get out of my head and into my body. So that’s what I did! I challenged myself to make small goals for myself. As simple as sleeping, eating and exercise (basic self care). My daily routine for 2020 included thirty minutes of boxing & thirty minutes of yoga practice daily and ABSOLUTELY NO EXCUSES! …even if it meant waking up at 5:20 am to get a workout in before my 12 hour shift! 

Did I always feel like getting out of bed? The answer is positively NO (I’m a shift worker), but a wise woman once said, ” fake it until you make it!!” So I did just that. I made my bed so I could complete the first task of the day, got my sports attire on and rolled my shoulders back and lifted my chin up.            

Confidence is a choice and your worth is not defined by others. So the question to ask yourself is: what do you value in life and in yourself? Is it…

  • Family and a sense of belonging?
  • Pride in seeing holistic change in the mind, body and spirit?
  • Relief from back pain by strengthening the core and back muscles while staying limber?
  • Quieting the mind: mindfulness?
  • Stress relief – relieving tension in tight muscles?
  • Awakening your true light – Daily Chakra practice?

If you answered yes to any of the above then FIGHT YOGA ClUB is right for you!

By the way, that wise woman was no other than my beautiful mom  Jennifer Connolly; my might, my inner fight.

Today’s objective, reach out to six people and spread words of joy and encouragement the authentic Jennifer Connolly way.

Pay it forward!

Shanti, Shanti, Shanti.

Peace, Peace, Peace.

Gillian Win Connolly