On paper, it seemed like I had enough support to help me process losing our family home due to financial trials, marital challenges, moving three times uprooting our four school aged children, plus two job changes each for both me and my husband!
Although I wasn’t diagnosed with anxiety and depression, I fluctuated between the two in varying degrees depending on the day. I felt inadequate to provide a stable home for my family in the midst of the stressors. I felt very fragmented, insecure, alone and afraid. This is who I was when I began my Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra Teacher Training with Jennifer.
My family is part of a strong church community and we are surrounded by close friends and family. I am a yoga teacher and I have a strong personal yoga practice and also a beautiful network of like-minded yoga teacher friends. Even with all of this support, I was suffering.
My time with Jennifer was a transformational journey. During the training, I first knew something new was shifting in me during the teaching of the ‘five levels of being’ from yoga philosophy, and what Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra is based on. Learning about the wisdom level of being called ‘Witness-Awareness’ helped me to be able to find a new perspective.
I pulled back, like the eagle with eagle eyes, to ‘observe’ the stressors in my life, without going into the place of fear or anxiety. I became the calm ‘witness’ of all that was going on. That included being able to witness and ‘be with’ all the roller-coaster ride of sensations and emotions I often felt, without feeling threatened by them.
This new place of stability gave me the bandwidth to be able to find and create a ‘safe space’ within me, called the ‘Inner Sanctuary’ in the practice of Divine Sleep. Resting within my Inner Sanctuary helped me get to the next step which was to genuinely feel and hear my ‘Heart’s Longing’ which I greatly needed to get in touch with, and state that it was already the truth.
This summer was our third move (the renter’s life), our kids changed schools, my husband started a new job, and we graduated our second child, and sent her off to college. It was crucial during this stressful time for me to create space in my schedule for me: my yoga practice, but often, Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra took priority! If I woke up in the morning (most often with short, shallow breaths, and at times the desire to roll over and delay the day and it’s long list of to-do’s), I guided myself through the first few stages of Divine Sleep.
Then, after the long days of packing and unpacking the house, then packing up my daughter’s things for college, I would lay in my bed before sleeping and let Jennifer’s Deep Relaxation Divine Sleep CD guide me through all the stages (my favorite is the Eagle Journey: Seven Directions to the Source). I found am and pm Divine Sleep kept my body, mind and spirit stable during a time of incredible change and upheaval.
I can’t share my story without including Jennifer Reis and her impact on me as a yoga teacher and human being. I was given the opportunity to assist two of Jennifer’s Divine Sleep teacher trainings! This experience has given me confidence as both a teacher of yoga and yoga nidra – and an individual. Her honesty, supported with compassion and patience, gave me life. In my interactions with her, she was aware of and acknowledged MY whole being, and my spiritual Self.