Waller had been through many upheavals including being her father’s care-giver. She found the practice of Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra tremendously assisted in integrating her emotions and reactions, allowing her to feel her true light again as a smiling, radiant being! She is an inspiration for healing through Self-Love and self care.
I’ve struggled with depression since I was a little kid, as well as an eating disorder that I almost died from just about five years ago. Thinking I was ‘in recovery’, while I had been malnourished for many years. Following breaking down a few years ago, I put on more weight than I was comfortable with and felt not like myself. I had been living from a place of doing and taking care of others.
I was not conscious of a compulsive need to help others and keep my body in shape to keep up with my best. It was an endless cycle of isolation and shame. Then, at the same time, I had to take care of my dad who was going through a psychotic breakdown which transpired into dementia. Nothing I had done in the past – intense workouts, yoga or meditation – worked for grounding because the grief from my dad’s situation was causing me to not be able to work very much or sleep.
I took respite in other people. I felt that ‘If I’m not alone, I’m okay’, and ‘If I am helping enough people then that means I am okay’. And when overwhelm came to a head from tending to others through teaching yoga or taking care of my dad, I realized that I was really not okay because I didn’t feel like I had enough inner resources to sustain myself. At that point, I had to quit working and just work on myself.
The resource which has the most profound effect on me is Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra with Jennifer. I have been practicing her CD’s for two years now. I practice every day and even two or three times if I can. More than anything Divine Sleep has allowed me to heal and integrate large and small life traumas and become centered daily. I studied to become a Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra teacher with Jennifer and lead it in all my classes.
Now I am nourished from within. I have a tool that lets me gain access to my consciousness to stay centered. I often hear Jennifer’s voice during the day when things feel chaotic reminding me to “sigh out all worries, or feel my bones are heavy”! Yoga nidra has helped me heal from the remnants of an eating disorder in the places I didn’t know I was still imbalanced. I now feel self-contained and together when I’m out in the world, as well safe in my body image and okay with being exactly who and how I am!
I feel like yoga nidra is really the only thing that truly has helped my brain and nervous system to reset from the trauma of being malnourished with my eating disorder for many years. The whole situation and ways that I would rebound and go back into the eating disorder is not there anymore.
I feel like my level of discernment and ability to make wise choices that are flexible has improved. Because of the disorder, I was eating, but I could be extreme about it. Now, I’m flexible with everything. I can go out for pizza, and feel completely fine about it, and that is a true miracle because I was the insane controller of food for so many years!
Divine Sleep has now become my respite, where in the past my respite was in being with other people or in helping others. I used to teach a huge amount of yoga classes, and energy flowing outward to others is not where I want to dedicate my energy right now. Instead, I practice a tremendous amount of self-care – like Divine Sleep – and I feel so happy and light!
Now I’m able to see when I need to say ‘yes’ and when to say ‘no’ based on my energy and my desire for what takes care of me. If you’ve gone through trauma, and had a lot of powerful emotional events, I now know its possible for myself and for all of us, to live my life from a ‘feeling place’ and not just coming from a need to fill up with activities or people which are draining.
Yoga Nidra helps me more than anything to stay centered. I think if everyone had access to a retreat where they could go for the deep rest that they needed, how transformative it would be for their community. A lot of my own struggles in relationships, and even with work right now, occur when I am ungrounded or moving faster than my body and mind are in sync. Divine Sleep Yoga Nidra brings me home to a place inside that is calm, open and awake.
The training and retreat with Jennifer was a milestone for me. It taught me to go inside and slow down. Divine Sleep has been much more important than going to therapy, or getting a good run in, or working out — because if the mind is way outside of the body, trying to process emotions and events, then nothing is getting integrated spiritually and that was what I’ve needed to recover fully a healthy relationship to my body and myself.
When I have difficulty sleeping, I practice Divine Sleep and any anxiety or tiredness from the night before settles. At times my energy feels like it’s almost hovering above me, and then I practice yoga nidra and I come back down into my body and all the anxious energy, or the feeling that ‘there’s something wrong’, or I feel like hiding from the world, totally shifts and I settle down with calm clarity inside. The practice takes me through everything thoroughly that needed to be shaken off, and brings my energy into my own healing flow.
I was so hard on myself for so many years, and now I am not. Instead, I am good to myself and supportive of my needs. I feel like Divine Sleep has healed root chakra issues (basic needs, money, security, safety). Every time I lie down, I felt like it was my root that was missing, creating my previous imbalances, and the practice nourished and soothed and opened root energy. I feel like the practice has balanced my glands and I feel healthier and balanced.
Since I was 16 I have taught yoga to teenagers in a domestic violence shelter, and women recovering from prostitution and drugs and alcohol. What Divine Sleep offers is so different and more potent than what I had taught in the past – the effects are palpable and when I walk in to teach, they ask for my yoga nidra based meditation and they really light up after just a short practice.
Jennifer’s voice is very comforting and I’m sleeping much better! People around me are commenting that I’ve shifted – I’m more relaxed and energized, unravelling towards radiance. When I feel a downward wave of thoughts, I hear her voice in my mind and it helps me to be soothed and feel empowered.