When I first started practicing Ashtanga, I never thought about drop backs. Not until teachers started encouraging me to do them. For a long time, I was scared. I thought I would hurt myself. I wasn't confident. I also wasn't strong enough. My spine was stiffer. I never dropped back unless a teacher was standing with me and it took me a long time to do even one solo.
After some solid hard work and practice, I can honestly say that I am stronger, my confidence is up, I'm not scared. I haven't had a mysore practice in forever, so today was the first time I've dropped back in quite some time. It felt completely natural. I just dropped back and I sloppily stood up. ALONE. No assistance. Wow. I looked at my teacher and said very quietly, 'that was fun.' Then I did it again two more times. Each time, easier than the last.
My whole world has changed.
I'd like to thank Jill for planting some awesome drop back seeds a year ago and for her encouragement along this path. I'd like to thank Karen for being my first mysore teacher and for helping me realize where my hands should go when they meet floor. I'd like to thank David Keil for teaching me about keeping my arms straight when dropping back, among many other things. I'd like to thank N.W. for just watching me today and witnessing it. I'd like to thank myself for sticking with this practice.
That is all. This is magical.