One day in South Africa, I was walking in the bush in the Sabie Sands (the area adjacent to the Kruger National Park). It’s where the wild animals live. By wild animals I mean lions, leopards, rhinos, hippos, giraffes and spiders. I mean a place where antelope are hunted by cheetah, where eagles lift small hyenas to the sky and where snakes strangle full grown wildebeest. It’s dangerous to be on foot and requires a lot of skill and respect. I walked with a guide – his name was George. George had a rifle, just in case. Not that it would help if you were charged by a lion, but its sound is a deterrent and it gives a human some false confidence. We walked slowly.
Even though we were being careful, we walked into an elephant in musth. Musth or must is a periodic condition in bull (male) elephants characterized by highly aggressive behavior and accompanied by a large rise in Testosterone, which are often as much as 60 times greater than in the same elephant at other times. The most placid elephants become highly violent toward humans and other elephants during musth.
Despite the training – the drills to stand still, to make yourself small and back away as slowly as possible– George knew that this elephant was not going to take kindly to us hanging around. To cut a long story short – my life flashed before my eyes. It was the longest 5 seconds of my life. We ran. We ran for our lives.
When I looked down from the tree that George and I had ascended as if with wings – I was shaking so much, I wasn’t sure that I was even still alive. My theory on shaking now is that it’s to remind us that we are alive! None of this compared to the feeling of teaching my first public yoga class.
The elephant episode was a walk in the park compared to the fear and trepidation I had on that day. It took a year of teaching many classes per week to even begin to think I was on the right track. It took confidence and trust, buckets of love and unquestionable belief in this practice and its healing and transformative qualities.
I took 1,000+ hours of teacher trainings, I got every certificate I could – but still I needed a teacher. I needed someone to whom I could talk, ask questions about every aspect of teaching: poses, sequences, adjustments, music, chanting – this, that, everything. I needed a mentor.
I’ve taught tens of thousands of yoga class hours, I’ve lead workshops and trainings, guided practices of hundreds of people at a time and mentored dozens of students and I’m so pleased to be able to offer a mentoring program and share everything I know and have learned.
This is a one-on-one program that follows the “Feet Face Forward” philosophy to realize a happier and healthier life.