On Monday I did not go to my normal Altamonte Springs Yoga Warm and Slow class because it was Lee Clise’s birthday! Happy Birthday Lee! I went to Lee’s warm hatha flow yoga at 7:00 at Serenity Now Yoga. I was having many problems figuring out what to get her for her birthday because she did one of the most amazing things ever for my birthday. No one else in my family had even called me that day but when I came to class she had a Tweety bird balloon and noise makers and cake and everything to go with it. It was super duper amazing and made me feel so loved on a day I was feeling left out, my own birthday even.
So when it came to getting her something I did not know what to get. She is gluten intolerant, giving up sweets and alcohol for lent, does not like having the attention a lot, and in general seems to get uncomfortable when you give her something. I had a mat bag I had made and she liked so I knew I could give her that. I had bought her a stone necklace at a craft show the weekend after my birthday as a thank you gift to put on her mat bag I made her (a different one than the one I gave her for her birthday) but she had changed the design so many times that it no longer matched, so I had that. But it really did not seem like enough for what she had done for me. And then I realized, I could give her my first mala (prayer beads). I got the mala at an aide for Africa yoga event. For donation you could take 108 sun salutations. I loved paying for something which seemed slightly like torture after 50 sun salutations. They kept saying “sink deep into this chair (pose) and send the love to Africa.” After 50 squats you might not think you have a lot of love left, but you kind of give into the burning and focus and the intention. It was also my first 108 sun salutations and a birthday gift to myself. You also got a mala for your donation. So I thought giving my mala to the most influential person in my yoga life would be a fitting gesture. I was sure she must have at least one, if not several.
So, I waited around until the line of new people and gift givers had gone to set up in the studio and gave Lee the necklace and bag, which she loved. The necklace looks so good on her. Then I explained why I was giving her the mala, and what it meant to me to give her the mala. At this point we are both nearly in tears and she tells me that she had just given her mala to her brother a few weeks before as he is just getting into yoga and meditation. Lee had gone shopping the previous weekend for a new one, but just had not gotten one. It was serendipity, just the capricious connection of fate.
Mind you I then went to class and had a horrible time getting into it, especially since my last post was about being so into my practice. I have been wearing heals more often and my ankles were having I hard time with all the lunge poses (entire standing sequence). Lee is an awesome and supportive teacher. She is also very knowledgeable about alignment and if she does not know you answer she will find someone who is. I love her and wish her lots of light and love for her birthday!