I had a wonderful class today filled with teaching and learning opportunities. I had 18 students and the range of experience was from brand new students, pregnant women, non-Iyengar teachers, and continuing students. One of the new students was recently diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) and is in a lot of pain. I remembered when I was first diagnosed with RA: the feeling of pain, fear, isolation, and hopelessness. As I reflect on my own experience, I am filled with compassion for this new student, and for everyone who suffers with chronic pain. It is hard to understand chronic pain unless you've lived with it, and certainly not something I would want anybody to understand because that would mean they live with chronic pain. I have found some good tips on a web site called The New Way RA.
I am full of gratitude for the career path that I have chosen because I know how much it has helped me live a happy, productive life, and I look forward to working with my new student to help her find some ways to manage her pain.