Around 7 months ago I woke up on a cold concrete floor.
There were at least 10 people circled around me. I tried to lift my head but felt the warm palms of a stranger's hands cradling the back of my skull.
"Don't move" he said.
I began crying and screaming out, not knowing what had happened. Not knowing why someone was yelling that I could die because this stranger lifted my head. Not knowing why my friend was talking to a 9-1-1 dispatcher above me or why my other one was crying.
I remembered being hungry and wanting pizza. That whole night I had a strange feeling something was going to happen. I went to class, work, the gym and went out with friends. I had recently stopped going out but decided to step out for a friend's birthday, decided to switch things up.
But the whole night there was this constant chatter of ruminating thoughts playing in my head and it was almost as if all of the violinists in the orchestra within my head were hitting their melodic climax. I remember ordering pizza and being really annoyed with the cashier as he took a long time to explain what a "grandma slice" was.
I asked the EMTs on the scene if I was going to die. I had this unshakable fear that I might die, but I knew deep down my time wasn't up. No one would answer me. It was in the moment I was being wheeled into a stretcher that a firefighter looked at me in the eye. I asked him if I was going to die and told him "I had a lot of things to do,"
"Of course you're not going to die sweetie you're going to be fine," he grinned and hopped out of the ambulance.
It doesn't take a genius to acknowledge that our lives are compilations of our experiences. We can't arrive at our destination without taking X mode of transportation to get there. But we do have certain "tower" experiences we carry with us.
My life so far has pretty much been a series of those tower experiences.
I remember struggling a lot in adolescence. I was always searching for something more. Always feeling connected to something larger than myself. Always running towards the next thing. From an early age I felt like I was ready to go. I've always had this restlessness with an unnameable cause.
As I began running towards some mysterious and undefined goal, the universe began throwing in some "roadblocks" for me to hurdle over. Fighting and abuse in the home, financial insecurity, a feeling or perception of lack of approval from peers and parents; depression and anxiety which later manifested into an eating disorder.
But, roadblocks are not closed-doorways. They're actually beautifully decorated, open gateways to new hallways you never even thought of walking down.
A few tower moments later I was a journalist on Long Island. I was driving to cover a sporting event driving down the Long Island Sound when I slammed into the car in front of me.
Instead of hitting the break, I hit the gas. My car began pushing into me one inch at a time, and with each moment of contraction I became more and more aware of one pressing question — how did I get here?
I decided to move to California. I applied for a few jobs and was hired right away as a college student for a paid position at a newspaper. I said yes, worked day and night for three months, donated most of my possessions and drove across the country in three days flat.
When you're in alignment with the universe the tower moments stay at bay as they truly only exist to bring you into alignment with your predetermined path.
I believe we raise our hands and volunteer before we start this human experience. We set intentions, as we do in our yoga practice, for what it is we will accomplish on Earth. What it is we will accomplish in this particular lifetime.
And for some, the journey to that self-actualization is smooth but for others, it takes one, two, or a lifetime of tower moments to show them the right path.
I was wheeled into that MRI with tears streaming down my face, shaking. Not knowing if I had cracked my skull, not knowing what caused me to lose consciousness in the first place, not knowing how I would pay my bills if I was injured or how I would live my life if I had permanent brain damage.
And yet I felt so calm, as I placed one hand on my belly and the other on my heart. A gesture I had done many times before in my yoga practice.
I still wonder how colorful my brain looked in that MRI that night as I drew attention to my inhales entering my body and exhales leaving it.
In that moment I made a decision to change. To actually allow the bricks of my unstable tower to crumble down. To flow with life instead of crash against it.
A month or so later I quit my job as a journalist and enrolled in a 200 hour Yoga Teacher Training Program.
Since graduating YTT in May I have been meditating on my journey, my growth and my future.
How can I use my education and couple of years of experience in journalism and media to spread knowledge, wisdom & insight?
How can I use these tools — my Upaya or “skillful means,” to help others self-actualize?
I can live ultravioletly- without boundaries. Living ultravioletly means always consciously choosing love, light and healing to help others on their life path.
My tools? Yoga, philosophy, curiosity and love.
Ultraviolet Asana is a personalized yoga plan created for you based off of what your energetic and physical needs are. Utilizing Ultraviolet Asana YouTube videos, unique and hand-crafted journaling prompts and meditations I will create a personalized monthly calendar for you to begin or deepen your yoga practice.
Through yoga and mediation I hope you are able to avoid those tower moments and bring yourself back to that intention you set for this lifetime however long ago you were born. My intentions for this program are to provide you the space and tools to overcome perceived obstacles and barriers — energetically and physically — and help reroute you to your true path.
With love, with light, with courage and vulnerability. Ultravioletly.