Our instructor Karla Huffman, better known as gyspy yoga, even suggested we use our social media throughout the evening. But, against better judgement, I left my phone in my purse. I enjoyed every minute of Trap Yoga, but that week in particular was a struggle for me and I needed to let it all go.
I was so ready for that workweek to be over, too. So much so, I prepped for it like I was going on vacation
I bought my ticket Monday, got a second mat on Wednesday to provide cushion to these wide hips, and packed my bag Thursday night--leggings, a black mock neck hoodie, black cami (just in case I got hot), some extra socks, my mats, and my stainless steel water bottle .I even brought extra drawers just in case my panty line to legging ratio wasn’t on point--yes, I was that concerned. To maintain, I kept reminding myself, “all you have to do is make it til trap yoga and your peaceful weekend can begin.”
Friday was supposed to be that simple.
It started off bitter--it rained terribly and the temperature dropped significantly that evening. Still, I wasn’t going to let a little bad weather ruin my plans. Once I chatted with my Creative Director, I sent some emails, changed my clothes and dipped. Since I work downtown, it was practically nothing to get to Wicker Park--or at least, that’s what I thought.
I took the Blue line to Damen, then a Lyft over to Reunion--I was not here for rain or cold air. Since I was coming from work, I had to lug around my travel duffle and leather satchel, which made my trip uncomfortable. Everyone decided to ride the train the same night I decided to be the yogi bag lady. I didn’t think that one through.
When I finally arrived, there had to be at least 20 mats on the ground, so I had to slowly tiptoe my way to a nice spot in the back where I could gather my bearings and settle in. Of course, just as I unpacked my layers, we we were all tasked with moving our belongings to the back of the venue to make room for more people. AT that point I wasn't worried about photos because I couldn't even use my hands.
“It just doesn’t end does it,” I thought.
At that moment I was filled with emotion, and almost turned around to hail a lyft back to Hyde Park. “I can’t even find a spot anymore! Where am I gonna sit? What am I going to do about pics? I hope my feet don’t stink…” and the anxiety attack began filling up my soul. Nothing was going my way. I was extremely uncomfortable. There were so many bodies around me, and I was just standing there, feeling opie with my big ass bags smelling like CTA and sweat.
That’s when Karla came up to me. “Have you checked in yet?” I guess she sensed how frazzled I was because as I went to grab my phone she was like, “Take your time no worries.”
I was all good then.
And it wasn’t because I had more time to get myself together, either. It was because someone had actually noticed me in the struggle. I lit up inside.
Often times, when we are in a panic, it’s great when someone sees you for what you are. It’s like she knew I needed this break from the outside world and wanted to actually help me. I’m sure I wasn’t the only one, but it felt good to be welcomed and appreciated.
I found a spot in the back in between Lo, Naomi, and B, who I soon learned were all close friends. We shook hands and began the intros. By then I had forgotten all about my phone, and was engulfed in conversation.
B had went to a Yimosa class Karla put on the week before at The Promontory and added more brownie points to the Karla Huffman review. She also mentioned how she herself was interested in presenting a series of yoga groups for women to share their milestones, hardships, and techniques with like-minded yogis.
The four of us politicked on our mats until DJ Rae Chardonnay brought out the trap. We went into savasana and the rest was magic. We twerked, we laughed, we exhaled, we swayed, we sweat and we said yes to ourselves and our bodies--Karla said that was our meditation for the practice. My thighs never burned so much, but I’ve never felt so alive. And not once did I use my phone. It was glorious.
We even recited Wale’s verse in “No Hands” while twerking side to side in goddess pose. It was fantastically exhilarating. And all Karla kept saying was, “Say Yes. Say Yes. Say Yes.”
After 90 minutes, the air got lighter and we namaste’d our way to clarity. I felt refreshed, calm, and rejuvenated--everything looked brighter, everyone was smiling, and I couldn’t even remember the ridiculous commute out. We were all on a higher plane, so naturally we all gravitated towards the complimentary food and drank--fresh guac and cocktails of various kombuchas and gin. I chopped it up with my neighbors and caught up with some melanated ladies hovering by my bags. As I gathered my stuff, we bonded over white-washed yoga studio horror stories.
Finally, there was someone else who understood the frustration of not being able to find a yoga studio that welcomed people of color as members and instructors.
I exchanged my number and social info touching my phone for the first time and proceeded to set my location in lyft. My lucky chariot, Greg and his very large Tahoe (I think), was drowned by my excitement. I couldn’t share everything, though-- I needed to go home and tell bae what a great time I’d had. So much twerking. So much vibrance. So much fun. So much ohm. I'm not sure why I was so hell bent on the photo, to be honest with you. my mind plays tricks on me sometimes. as if I couldn't have used giphs, or something.
I’m looking forward to the next Trap Yoga session in November--last friday was everything if not life itself. according to the gypsy, she is planning to host two in december.
I'll let someone else take the picture.