Find your pace and honor the sights which grace your journey.
I have been practicing yoga for more than half my life and just last week I figured out how to do side crow. I've realized lately that I'm a very slow learner in my yoga practice...not because I am unintelligent or not dedicated...in fact it's the opposite. When I discovered yoga as a 12 year old I didn't see it as a way to get fit or strong or even more balanced...I saw it as a way to connect to the self. This option was never really given to me before. Growing up we were told to pray to God and Jesus and tell them thank you for our lives. The thought of having a prayer with my own soul blew my mind. I was introduced to traditional Hindi/Buddhist practice and never knew yoga without meditation. I had spent the year in Social Studies learning about Hindu culture, the Buddhist philosophy and the Tao. To have the opportunity to be emerged in the practice and culture had me determined to open my mind and learn as much about this new perspective as I could. As a vegetarian...I was already on board with Buddha's ideas.
I took everything in so incredibly deeply. My goal was never to "get my splits" or "hold a perfect handstand" because I was so aware of how little things like this impacted the journey. The first thing I learned as a yogi was a sun salutation. I thought "What?! There is a group of people who greet the sunshine every morning with bends and stretches? I found my family."
Yoga is so much more about what you bring to the mat than about what you do on the mat.
Of course we all love to share our flow videos where we are all warmed up and we slide into anasana perfectly because it's a display of the hard work we put into getting there...and I would be lying if I said I never watch inspiring videos of the perfect flow...those things are amazing and a beautiful ode to this sacred journey we are all on. But we have to remember, just because someone may have a move down that you've been working on forever and can't seem to master- it doesn't make them a better Yogi than you. There's actually no such thing as being a better or worse Yogi than someone else because we are learning the exact lessons our higher selves want us to know.
I feel incredibly blessed that my yoga journey started with years of solo meditation and sun salutations in the morning. It was so simple....but it completely changed my life. The slow and consistent daily effort we make for our higher selves is so worth it.
Stay patient my friends, we are all exactly where we are meant to be.
Trust your pace, you are the Universe in ecstatic motion.