After what proved to be a later than expected night before Thanksgiving, I found the resolve this morning to make it to my yoga studio's annual 9:30 a.m. holiday class that helps us kick off the day's madness and revelry. Shortly after me, my brother and his girlfriend, who are visiting from Denver, pulled into the parking spot next to me. We chatted for a bit before my friend Laura rolled up next to us in her car and I sat with her to chat for a while too. It was already a morning filled with people that are important to me.
Today is the day in which we give thanks as a nation for so much of the hard work done by our ancestors in creating this country. While true there is baggage alongside colonizing and forming a new nation, there are many good memories associated with it. But today is just one day of the year. How often do we work on being thankful? One thing I have learned from my yoga practice is to more actively practice gratitude and awareness for simple things in my life. To be present and not let the day pass me by without realizing I am lucky to be alive.
I am not a religious person but I have found value and joy in having a place that calls me back to personal growth. That place for me is Practicing Yoga. For the community it brings together and the teachers who lead us as we work to stay mindful and introspective about the life we are leading. When I walk through the doors, I feel different as it triggers emotions and patterns I have established around it.
As the day when we give thanks passes by, I am grateful for a place which challenges me to be more thankful and more aware of my life and my surroundings.