Teaching Recap: December 2019

somerjill_floating_chair_utkatasana

The last month of the year was rough, people. All those holidays made for really low attendance across the board, and since some of my classes are paid by the head, I took a financial hit. It is hard to traipse through sloppy winter weather only to find not a single student has shown up to practice. And it’s hard not to take it personally. And it’s hard to put that disappointment aside, and bring my full energy and care to the next class, and the next group of students. 

This slow month aside, 2019 has been pretty magical. I had chances to teach in some new spaces, with special populations, and in some new formats. I made my second visit to the Museum of Fine Arts for Namaste Saturday (teaching barefoot in that hallowed space is thrilling); I worked with young families at the Harvard Graduate School. I co-led some workshops with my pal Paulina, including the raucous “Yoga With Friends” (which we hope to bring back early 2020). I saw so many women navigate their journeys through pregnancy, and caught them on the other side, smiling and radiant, with new babies in tow. I watched the faces of students flicker with joy, with frustration, with sudden understanding; I watched tears roll and heard giggles bubble up. I received thanks, and apologies, and criticisms, and silly jokes.

It’s a great display of humanity, this yoga practice. I am grateful―more grateful than I can express here―for the chance to be a part of it.

December (and total 2019) by the numbers:

  • 43 classes (544)
  • 298 students (4919)
  • 48+ hours (596+)
  • 8 locations

Some select sweet comments and funny feedback from students:

  • “That lateral work that you suggested the other week has changed the quality of my life.”
  • “The Red Line was stalled one stop away, and I was internally screaming, ‘I Just. Need. To Go. To Yoga.'”
  • “I used to work from home on Wednesdays, but I moved things around so that I could come practice yoga with you.”
  • “That was such a nice class, and such a nice savasana!”
  • “Jill, I have a confession: I took a yoga class over the weekend and the instructor wasn’t you and it… it just wasn’t the same.”
  • “You’re very good at what you do.”
  • “I’m carrying around a bowling ball with a squirrel trapped inside. It’s a very active squirrel.”
  • “Thank you for a lovely practice today. You are a mooring in the choppy sea of life.”

And this exchange:

Me: Any requests for class? Parts of the body you want to work on?
Student: Just anything. It’s all a mess.

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