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Feed Your Soul

Did you ever end up exactly where you needed to be, with the people you needed to be with, and not know it until you arrived?  That's what happened to me Saturday night.  I got a notice from a friend that she was teaching a restorative yoga class not only in Boston, but in the North End, on Hanover St.  I immediately popped off an e-mail to my son telling him of this event and he wrote back saying, "let's do it." Of course my husband came partly because he likes restorative yoga and being with my son, but I suspect he really came because he loves the authentic Italian food that is so abundant in the North End.  

We got there a few minutes early and upon entering the building I was immediately lost in the sensual smells of any good yoga or meditation studio.  Oils and incense permeate the air, and a calmness envelopes you, like a warm, soft blanket.  It has been awhile since I've taken restorative yoga.  When my son sold his studio, probably a year ago now, we fell away from it.  So just in entering the space, seeing all the naked shoes, like little ghost, smelling the air, and giving into the low light, I felt like I was coming home and it was just where I needed to be at that particular moment.  We set up our mats, my husband in front of me, my son by my side and my friend at the front of the room.  I was perfectly, instantly taken away by the sweet, soft sound of her voice...and I didn't come back for 90 minutes..

The space itself is beautiful..a restored walk-up, trust me, it was a walk up.  About 20 people in the room practicing and yet, you are alone with your own heart, soul and mind.  Restorative Yoga is a form of yoga that seeks to achieve physical, mental and emotional relaxation with the aid of props. The use of props makes it easier for you to maintain balance while you are stimulating and relaxing your body. In this class we not only used traditional restorative poses while being guided, in breath, by my lovely friend Rachael Duda, but for the first time the 3 of us where introduces to the singing bowls and flowing water, under the gentle supervision of Elaine O'Rourke.  It was a unique and lovely experience.  I felt myself drifting and then finally letting go, and just being aware of my breath letting the outside world slip away.  So much stress was being held onto that I wasn't even aware of until it was gone. My weary body stretched and moved easily and my new knee felt more like a part of me than a replacement. I came to peace with it's limitations but also came to know that it would serve me well all the rest of my days.  I was where I needed to be and it was a gift that was so easy to give myself and my boys.  Rachael was so gentle in her transfer of poses and also in her hands on healing.  It's like she just knew what we needed right at that moment.  I could have stayed there for much longer but then I did tell you that my husband loves Italian food, right. So slowly and with intention, I came back to the real world. 

Sometimes we let life and circumstances come into our lives and we hold on tight for fear of letting go.  We all have good times and bad.  I was once again rewarded when I put myself first and let go of the feelings that were dragging me down.  I left feeling like every part of my mind, body and soul was working exactly as it should be, and when my feet slipped back into my was with confidence that the trip down would be much lighter than the trip up those three flights of stairs.  The universe sometimes takes over for us and plants us right where we need to be. We just have to be open to receiving the gift. I'm very grateful that the universe knows me better than I know myself sometimes..A huge thank you to Rachael and North End Yoga for feeding my soul and then we were off to feed our senses...

Yoga is a light which, once lit

will never dim.

The better your practice,

the brighter your flame.

B.K.S. Iyengar

I just want to share a few photo's of lovely Hanover street on a Saturday night.  It is still very much a neighborhood and life happens in the streets and restaurants, cafe's and coffee's electric, especially at night.

North End Yoga

Walking while eating gelato...Yum.

Assaggio's on Prince Street for dinner.  The best. Jim approves.

Where neighbors and friends the bar. 

After dinner, Mike's Pastry. This my friends, is the line to get in and there are four lines inside waiting to order.  Authentic Italian pastry.  The best in town, well except for Modern across the street.

Is it time for you to think about your mind, body and soul.  You might not choose to do restorative yoga but if there is something that you love, that you haven't indulged in lately, give it a go.  It can't hurt and maybe it will be just the thing you need to re-kindle your flame...wishing you the best week ahead...

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Reader Comments (11)

What a wonderful evening, Cheryl, and in one of my very, very favorite places (North End).
Actually, that is just where I'll be this coming weekend. :-)
Is there EVER not a line to get in, at Mike's????

October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLisa Gordon

Just home from a LONG trip to Michigan . . . 13+ hours non-stop out with a stop-over in Rochester, NY coming home to break up the exhausting, stressful ride.
Could I EVER use some relaxation now! Maybe some day I'll try this on for size. You did a wonderful job explaining it to me. Now I want to know what your son is doing! How awesome the three of you participated in this together. Thanks for sharing! Kudos to your friend, Rachael! And re the North End . . . our daughter brings down canolis from time to time which will knock off anyone's socks! Killer rich! xox

October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterAntoinette Ledzian

What a lovely evening. Sounds wonderful

October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterKate T

I have been doing Restorative Yoga for the last few months and I look forward to it each week. I also am always surprised at how sore I am from meditation and stretching. Looks like a lovely place to take your class.

October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBarbara Hurst

That is the perfect place to be, both for the yoga and for the wonderful ambience of the North End..not to mention the delicious food! Looks and sounds like a wonderful evening. I think the universe needs to start talking to me...

October 25, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSusan

Beautiful post. The yoga studio sounds wonderful. Yoga classes here mostly take place in shared facilities i.e. Church hall etc so you don't get the smell!

October 26, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterBarb Evans

Thank you all for your visit and kind words. I love Restorative Yoga...and I have missed it because I didn't find a place to go and do it after Chris closed his studio. It's nice to know that we have found a new spot that we like...and that we get to go eat after...
Good for you Babara for doing restorative every week. I bet those hours after leaving are so relaxing...
Barb Evans...get yourself some incense sticks and a little metal bowl...go to the beach for some sand and find yourself a spot at home and relax, with your eyes closed and breath in tha calming smell. I burn an incense stick most nights as I sit in front of my little meditation table in my bedroom...Very calming. So lovely though that you do go to meditation...

October 26, 2016 | Registered CommenterCheryl Crotty

I don't do yoga, but this post made me feel at peace. And with a bit of a craving for Italian pastries....

October 26, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterShawna

Thank you for this Cheryl. Your words made me feel like I was home again too. I used to practise yoga and I especially loved the restorative yoga. My body needs that again. There is nothing like the feel and scent of a well loved yoga studio. You described all the sensations perfectly and the images complemented it all perfectly. I have a cherished Tibetan singing bowl and I bring it out when I need to go inwards. So nice that all three of you do this together. You keep inspiring me, my friend…you say what I need to hear! xo

October 26, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterSherry G.

First of all I was kind of sad to hear your son sold his yoga studio. 😟I loved reading your stories about it and know how much you loved it.

My birthday falls at the end of November and as a present to myself we always book a night in Boston near the Noryh Rnd or Faneuil Hall. So funny as we booked our room tonight in a North End Hotel right before I read this.

So much of this post resonates with me. Synergy. Totally believe in this. Yoga which I wish I could do more often. Meditation which I practice every day before I start my day and of course the North End! I am looking forward to the food, seeing the decorations and of course just walking every square inch and taking a million pictures!

November 5, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLiz Thomas

I know little about yoga, though I briefly attended a class a few years ago and loved it. I have never heard of restorative yoga before, but it sounds absolutely lovely for body, mind, and spirit. I think I need to find something similar near me.

November 10, 2016 | Unregistered CommenterLeón

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