I remember when I first stepped back into teaching Yoga after birthing Anna. I felt far removed from where I had been previously in my teaching. Disconnected from the depth of where I had landed in my physical practice, and feeling spiritually discombobulated.
There was definitely resistance stepping back into it, and yet it felt on some level that I needed it. Without it, a part of me felt lost.
I had always been very career focused, and in London I had a reputation.
Surprisingly to myself I agreed to be a Lululemon Ambassador right before learning I was pregnant. It was during that time that I began to feel less connected to the yoga world.
What once felt crucial, begun to feel trivial.
It was during this time, growing my baby, that I started to feel a split between the me who’s identity hung on Kristi the Senior Forrest Yoga Teacher, and the woman I was becoming.
I felt myself softening. I no longer prioritised long practises, or being upside down. I walked, I swam, I rested, and my yoga practice was just enough to keep me inspired in my teaching and to nourish my own changing body.
At the time I was unaware of the magnitude of transformation that was encroaching on me.
The feelings of no longer resonating with the life I was living; running around the city, teaching, and rocking the physically advanced poses, amplified after giving birth.
Lululemon quietly “let me go” after a few weeks of me having my baby when I couldn’t yet commit to stepping back into my Soho classes and being “visible”.
That phone call with Lululemon was a pivotal moment. As I sat in silence on the receiving end of the call, soaked in milk and nursing my baby, I was tested in seeing my value.
I was no longer career driven, earning a wage, packing out classes, and the people who once hovered around me, wanting to learn from me, dispersed into thin air.
Pinpricks of awareness began to heave my awareness towards the seismic shifts that began to flow into my life, opening into giant gaping cracks.
Me, my life, and the way I related to my work, had shifted exponentially.
The most challenging part of this what that I was unable to articulate why.
It is an alienating place to be. Suspended in that split between who you are and who you are becoming, unable to make any sense of it.
Then I stepped into motherhood a second time and those cracks went from gaping to chasmal. My perspectives, priorities and values metamorphosed, and I continued to amble around my feelings, not being able to make sense of it.
A year after my second baby was born I happened upon Matresence; the word that signifies “the complete transformation and identity shift a woman moves through when she becomes a mother.”
I stepped into deep study and learned that I wasn’t alone in my feelings of no longer being able to relate or make sense. For the first time I acknowledged my experiences and transitions into and through motherhood without internalising it.
What once felt confusing and discombobulating, begun to feel clarifying and empowering.
Within the process of learning about Matresence and connecting with hundreds of other women who were traveling through a variation of the same shift, I was given the gift of agency to do it my way.
To redefine my life, my values, and my role in the world, as a woman and as a mother.
That feeling of being split between who I used to be and the woman I was becoming diminished as I learned to meet myself with kindness and acceptance, redefine strength, and live in alignment with my values.
I’m still there, somewhere, oscillating within the transformation, not yet fully formed, though this time at peace, and in deep reverence of the process. Knowing that I am skilled at articulating my reflections and experiences, and capable of navigating my transitions with grace.