Words from Janine:
SEPARATION …. in the Yoga world, there is no such thing, just the illusion of separation. So why is it so hard when a MARRIAGE breaks down and we call it separation?
I’ve been carrying an expectation that I can do this in a full yogic, totally loving (unrealistic) way. I wanted our marriage separation to be an example of how two people can part also in love. In theory, it’s totally doable. In practice, it’s been fucking hard.
In September, Chris and I hosted and facilitated a teacher training retreat together for the first time as a ‘separated’ couple. There was no place to hide. We started agitated and unable to make eye contact, each in deep conflict. Chris was sick for the first two days, which shifted me out of resentment and into a place of compassion for his pain.
What happened next was that our mutual investment into the student experience, and my ability to hold clear space, was a far greater pull than the fear of being vulnerable and expressing my hurts, pains and angers with Chris. We agreed to a ‘lock-in’. For two hours we sat in a locked room with the commitment to clear emotionally. Holding space for one another in anger, sadness, upset, and confusion. Finally, we found understanding and a little more compassion for each other’s journey. The bigger picture, the greater good, became the back drop and motivation to push through our limited thinking and discover greater freedom together.
I found that in connection, all the challenges dropped away, and immediately a working relationship became clear.
Words from Chris:
Looking back on that week, it was the most challenging and emotional week I’ve ever been through. And as hard as it was, it was meant to be.
I was really unsure of how I was going to get through it, and many times just wanted to run away. Getting sick was almost a godsend, as I didn’t have to deal with shit, but it was just prolonging the inevitable. I think being on the training forced us to sort our stuff out which, in my opinion, made it the most transformational training/retreat I’ve ever been a part of.
I feel what Janine and I went through created a space for the participants to totally let go and shed many layers of their own ‘stuff’. Going from the thought of trying to hide what was happening to fully owning it felt absolutely amazing. It ended up being a magical week for all.
This has given me great confidence in knowing that HYA Yoga will not just continue being an awesome studio, but it will go from strength to strength.