I am avid in my yoga practice and find myself on my mat most days first thing in the morning. Several years ago though, what started as a slight pull grew to become more troublesome as the weeks went by. I thought I'd be able to push through the pain and it would pass, but my body had other ideas and I wasn't listening. I wasn't taking the advice that I always give my yoga students; which is to respect and listen to your body. It won't lie to you when you need to back off and do something differently.
So instead of the pain lessening, it was getting worse. I had a groin pull that took me 14 months to fully heal. For the first month, it was painful to teach my classes. It was challenging to demonstrate poses and I often relied solely on descriptions. I went for chiropractic care and PT, but neither modality was helping. In fact, they both exacerbated my pain, so I knew I had to tune in and find out what was going to heal me.
I turned more deeply to my meditation practice, which allowed me to accept my body's limitations. I also worked closely with my Wholeness Energetics guide to explore the roots of the pain, and the emotional baggage that was a contributing factor. Against the advice of my PT, I terminated that support and got back on my mat. I tuned in deeply and found the poses I could safely explore, that supported rather than contributed to my pain. When I started that exploration, I was able to do about 20% of what my usual practice had been. This time though I respected my body, listened to the pain and worked within the confines of that pain. Over the course of several months I began to experience the pain loosening its grip on my body. Slowly and with deep respect I continued to explore and honor the shifts as they occurred, and over time, found my way back to my full practice.
I learned so much that year about how to be grateful, even within a distressing situation. My meditation practice deepened, so that I knew I could let go of my asana practice if I had to. I got in touch with emotional baggage that I released and I learned new respect and understanding of what it means to be in pain. Although I'm very glad I didn't have to go the route of letting go of my asana practice, I appreciate the acceptance of what was, in that moment.