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Kansas City MO 64131

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THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

I've had to shift my own yoga practice around since I've started teaching yoga again. Instead of attending the evening yoga class on Wednesdays, I am now going to the noon yoga class. Not a big deal, it's just that the teachers are different between the two classes. Again, not a big deal because I'm super fortunate to have access to some awesome teachers. The lunch time yoga teacher is wonderful and funny. She seems to share my philosophy on yoga and how it should be a joyful practice. The down side is that I don't get to see Shannon, the evening yoga teacher as much as I used to. Shannon is the first yoga teacher I met when we moved here and I have been attending her Wednesday evening classes on and off for over five years. In that time, she encouraged me to volunteer at a private high school for underprivileged teens, seen me struggle with grief, and she nudged me back into teaching. We have both learned knew techniques in teaching from each other and I never in a million years would have done a yoga workshop without her insistence and support. You should read the letter of recommendation she wrote for me when I applied to teach at the Y. It says the most amazing and kind things about me and she wrote them with such sincerity that the Y believed her.

Scheduling has made it so our paths don't cross too often anymore and it had been some time since I had seen her face. So, I sent her a text asking her to meet me for lunch because I missed her face. We met for lunch yesterday at Eden Alley, a vegetarian/vegan restaurant that I love but hardly ever get to go to. Then afterwards, we went for a nice long walk outside. We talked about everything from relationships to yoga schedules to how to make the world a better place through yoga. It was so good and so easy. It would be a no brainer to say that I am grateful to have a friend like Shannon, but what I am really grateful for is the time we took for each other yesterday. It is really easy for me to let things (people) slide away. I'm not usually the one to instigate meetings and events. I guess, in a very passive aggressive way, I tend to assume that everyone has more important things to do than meet me for lunch.

I am thankful I took the initiative to cultivate this friendship. It also reminds me how difficult it is to make friends after you've reached a certain age. It is easy with busy work schedules and maintaining old relationships to not notice the need for new friendships until you move to a new state and a new town where you don't know anyone. Yesterday's lunch reminds me that I need to reach out and cultivate new friendships. Cultivating friendships is not my strong suit. I feel like I do a poor job of cultivating current relationships. It is a weakness I recognize and I want to work on this. Since I'm about to turn my garden into a patio, I need to grow something. It might as well be friends.  

I am thankful for my one day of scooter riding this week. I am thankful for beets and beats. I am thankful for my twenty minutes of meditation in the mornings. I am thankful for simple pleasures. I am thankful for you.