In yoga philosophy, ‘Santosha’ is a concept that broadly means to accept and be content with that which presents itself in our lives. To be able to sit with ‘what is’ and be ok with it.
Through Acceptance we reach a state of contentment that then allows us to move beyond our limitation.
Acceptance it seems, is the key ingredient to change.
Which leads me on to a yellow bike.
Yesterday I found out that the ‘osteo arthritis’ in my big toe joint is actually genetic arthritis and it’s already appearing in my other big toe joint. Surgery may be down the track, but for now I’m opting for damage limitation, natural remedies and steroids when necessary.
What I’m finding most confronting and upsetting is that running is out. Unfortunately it now really hurts when I run and anything that hurts is accelerating degeneration, so must be stopped.
Also, I’m told I need to wear sensible, solid walking shoes. Oh goodness gracious rolling eyes emoji.
My new minimalist trainers (2 pairs brought as they comfortably accommodate my swollen joint and don’t hurt) are no good as they’re too bendy.
My orthodics also need a sexy sounding ‘toe extension’ to immobilise my joint even more.
As a yoga teacher and practitioner, this is a problem. I’ve already had to curtail attending other people’s flow classes because I always unwittingly aggravate my toe.
My home practice has also become feet focused to accommodate the grotty joint 🙁
But working with the concept of Santosha, I have to be a big Yogi and Accept My Limitations and I have to find space to move onwards and upwards.
(I also need to up the anti inflammatory turmeric as the recommended daily dose of ibuprofen isn’t appealing).
So, I’m going to buy a bike.
To be clear, I’ve actually already got an old bike, but if I’m embracing change, I think I need a bike that I can strike out and get high on!
Let me explain:
In my yoga classes I often get people to tap in to memories of a time in their lives when they felt plugged in to life, vital, happy and ‘high’.
We breathe into and amplify the feelings these memories generate as we practice.
I have a great memory of cycling through the forest by Lake Tahoe in California when I was 20yrs old on a crappy yellow mountain bike that I loved. It was my sole source of transport during the year I lived there and I went everywhere on this bike.
I was fit from all the cycling so I could stand on the pedals and push hard to power up the hills, then I’d fly down the other side, gulping in the fresh pine scent of the forest and the cool mountain air. I felt ALIVE!
Acceptance of my new No-Running reality is leading me (slowly) to a place of excitement.
I’m going to get a bike. Hopefully yellow. I’m going to ride it fast and get high on endorphins.
Yesterday I felt despair. Today, I’m reaching Santosha 🙂