Goodbye, 2021 …

As this is my last Sunday email for 2021, it is only natural to look back and reflect on the year behind us. It started out with a glimmer of hope that COVID would be behind us and that life would return to “normal” as vaccines were being distributed on a wide scale and then the boosters arrived as well. Optimism and hope were on the rise and as vaccination rates increased, restrictions started to lift and, by mid-year, we thought the pandemic would be behind us. Unfortunately, 2021 turned into more of a rollercoaster than any of us could have imagined as these last few weeks brought New York the omicron variant and increasing numbers of COVID cases on Long Island. Although this end-of-year chaos might cause us to be glad to see the end of 2021, it is important we pause and find those things for which we can be grateful. So, as we end what turned out to be another chaotic, uncertain, and trying year, filled with tears, fears, jeers as well as cheers, I want to express my immense gratitude for YOU, the Absolute Yoga community. Whether we have seen you in-person in studio classes, in our online Zoom classes or whether you just read these musings here each week, it is your support and encouragement that have gotten us through this year intact and in business. Although I know the next few months are bound to be challenging, as we face increasing numbers of COVID cases in our area, I know we are strong, tough, resilient and resourceful. I have seen it myself this year in all of you and in all of my teachers who have stayed the course and taught their classes in studio as well as online throughout the year. Thank you to my incredibly competent and committed studio manager, Maria, as well as our desk staff Diane, Jane and Mary Anne, who have kept the studio not only running smoothly but cleaned and disinfected for everyone’s long-term safety and well-being. Much appreciation to Christine and Dawn for continuing to offer their counseling and reiki services in the studio throughout this crazy year and a big hero’s welcome and thank you to Meridith for beginning to offer her massage services in the studio during this chaotic year.

I don’t want to talk about silver linings, as I have in the past, but getting through this year together has taught us a lot. We have grown in so many ways, rising to the continuing challenges this year presented. Despite the rollercoaster of a year it has been, I suggest we all take a moment (or several moments) to be grateful for the irreplaceable and extraordinarily priceless gift of this precious life that each of us has been so privileged to participate in this year. As humans, we have been designed with this wonderful capacity for reflection and an ability to engage in this life in a way that gives us unlimited possibilities. Yet, so often we get caught up in the day-to-day routines (and this year the day-to-day fears and anxieties) and forget about the beauty of just existing, just being. Because life is a gift, made up of many, many gifts. Some are tiny, some are huge, and they all add up to something extraordinary.

As we countdown to the end of yet another turbulent year, let us look to what the New Year symbolizes … a brighter future ahead (as there is always a light at the end of the tunnel, just like there is always a light inside of us — we just have to be strong and resilient to reveal it), the promise of new possibilities and unlimited potential for a happy, healthy and safe 2022. We hope to see you on your mat in any of our in-studio or online classes this week as the rollercoaster of the year ends. Yet, just like any rollercoaster, there may be dips, there may be uphill climbs, but it is always exhilarating and fun!

As always, thank you for reading my musings. Wishing you a happy and healthy New Year. Namaste, Leslie

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