Is it yoga or festivals that brings out the childlike wonder and carefree moments in us? Both, I think. Right now, for instance, I’m watching an agile yogini float upside down on the feet of her sturdy acro partner below. Just a slackline away, a group of swirling hips twirl hoops round and round, steady in their beats beneath the sunny Colorado skies.
Less than an hour ago, I emerged from a Deep Hips class with Vail-based instructor Rachel Nelson. Feeling light and free, I wandered over to grab an ice cream bar and sit beneath the infinite blue blanket above me. There’s still chocolate on my face, no doubt, but not a worry in the world could pull me away from this state of contentment and peace.
Do you remember when you would do all this? Remember when you would dance barefoot and act silly, with nothing but smiles to share?
Through yoga, and simply being with ourselves in the experience of ourselves, we allow a new space of vulnerability to open. What we find is a treasure chest filled with light, love and laughter — perhaps pieces of ourselves that have been locked away for far too many years.
I used to love doing cartwheels on the grass. Well, especially on grass, but I truly loved doing cartwheels anywhere I possibly could, especially to music. Sometimes roundoffs too, if I had room to get a running start. Oh yes, and I LOVED hula hooping. Expressive energy, I am calling it now, and there’s plenty of that to go around at Wanderlust, available in abundance for hearts, bodies and minds of all ages.
I still love cartwheels, and I did some on the grass to music here at Wanderlust. I played with some hula hoops and I practiced on the slackline. I laughed a lot and cried a little, spent time with good friends and met some new ones too. My emotions were generally joyous, but always with a natural chance of afternoon showers — the tired moments and mood swings that inevitably come with a lot of exercise and even more emotional and social stimulation — easily remedied by what became daily ice cream treats, simple laughter, and stealing time away for afternoon naps.
For me, knowing that I will never be a child again is sort of sad, and more melancholy than anything. It’s not every day, or even every weekend, that I experience that life-affirming feeling of freedom — not just freedom of time, but freedom from expectations, stress, judgements, to-do’s, to-be’s …
But when we take that back, when we open up the treasure chest again, it’s just as beautiful as it ever was — resurfacing the gems and jewels of our soul that will never tire and only eventually will expire. Do your best to keep the chest wide open, never locked, and you will find that the heart inside still follows the same beats it always has, and all you have to do is dance.
Kim Fuller grew up in the Colorado mountains and has always found beauty and inspiration through nature and movement. Kim is a freelance journalist and a yoga teacher based in Vail. Her writing and photo work has focused on health, wellness, recreation, food and travel since 2007, and Kim began her yoga practice in Boulder, followed by her first teacher training with Real Evolution Yoga at Peace Retreat Costa Rica in November of 2012.