Friday, March 23, 2012

Why curly yogi?

I named my blog curly yogi for many reasons but the most obvious reason is, I have curly hair. (While we are discussing name choice, I do know that yogi is traditionally male but being a modern feminist I thought what the heck) Why is this so significant you ask? Why is having curly hair so different? Well on a very practical level it is not at all, but for many people, me included, our hair (and our appearance in general) can have a huge impact on our lives. Having curly hair was not the norm in a small privileged New England private school and instantly I felt very different from all the other flaxen haired lovelies I shared a playground with. Whether perceived or real I frequently felt like an outsider. How could hair do that you ask? How could I be so shallow? These small things matter when you are young, and other kids certainly don’t hesitate to let you know. Although hard for me at the time this feeling of being the other was actually a gift. I may not have been able to whip my hair in and out of ponytails in class as some form of pubescent flirtation or let my hair out in a car with the windows down (for fear of it getting so huge it would consume everyone else in the vehicle) but I was forced to cultivate an outsider mentality which means I had to look elsewhere for acceptance. I thrived in the arts, after school programs, camps etc. and slowly began to value what I had to offer even though I did not come in a familiar package. Being intellectually rebellious, constantly questioning the status quo and looking for answers not declarations was how my brain worked. It made perfect sense that when I hit the yoga mat the path of a yogi seemed both familiar and exhilarating. As silly as it may sound, my curls helped me cultivate a rebellious outsider’s spirit that landed me on a mat and turned my life upside down (ha ha, inversion joke). To all curlies, or anyone who feels different, once you hit the mat you begin realize that we are all the same. Namaste

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