I think I went to Bikram yoga class last night. I’m pretty sure I did. I have the sweaty clothes, stinky towel and sore spine to prove it. But what happened?
The day began like any other day. I woke up looking forward to my sitter coming that evening so I could sneak away for 90 minutes of pure sweaty bliss. I stayed well-hydrated throughout the day, made sure my last bite to eat was 2 hours before class started, fed the kids dinner, cleaned up, kissed them goodnight and went off to yoga. I was FREEEEEEEE!
I’ve been practicing Bikram yoga for a little over 4 months now, and it’s been very good to me. Those 90 minutes of focus and self-reflection (literally and figuratively) have helped me gain so much appreciation for my body and for what it can do. And talk about increased self-confidence — it’s the only activity you’ll see me do in tight pants and exposed midriff.
Over the past 2 months, it’s been harder for me to fit in as many yoga classes because of my running training. It had been over a week since I had last practiced yoga, but that’s happened before so I wasn’t too worried. I was just going to take it easy.
Sometime between the first set of breathing exercises and the 2nd “warm-up” pose, something went wrong. When I tried standing on one leg, that leg started shaking immediately. It even cramped up for a split second. Then came the blurry vision as my reflection started looking incredibly wide. Not double vision, but more like double WIDE vision. I kept seeing myself 10 feet wide and 3 feet tall. Very bizarre. Something incredibly unpleasant was happening, and while I’ve been in a dizzy state in the past, this time I couldn’t just breathe through it and continue with the pose. I had to get down on the floor. Immediately. Get to the floor, get to the floor, don’t pass out, just get to the floor, I kept telling myself. Somehow, I managed to quietly drop down into savasana (dead body pose) instead of clumsily falling the 5 feet 4 inches into unconsciousness.
I repeatedly tried to get up and do another pose. But that dizzy-double-wide-vision-I’m-starting-to-blackout-I’m-gonna-pass-out-feeling kept coming back again and again and again. So dead woman’s pose it was for me. I remained in a daze, in savasana, for most of the standing series. My gaze was soft on one spot of the ceiling while in my peripheral vision sweaty folks were moving fluidly from one pose to the next.
Maybe I fell asleep with my eyes open, but I swear I was there.