I can get caught up in ‘titles’ sometimes.
Sometimes it’s a need for validation; to make sure that I’m not creating scenarios that aren’t mutual. For example, girlfriend, or peer. Friend.
Sometimes, it’s for what I think is a status. For example, wife. Store Manager. Pretty. These were titles that I fought to attain, and I did. They were shitty titles that I threw away.
And other times, I rage and reject titles. Divorcee. OMG, I want to murder when I hear that word. Winner. Why does someone have to win? For someone to win, that means someone else has to lose. To me, every time a ‘winner’ is named, a ‘loser’ is as well. I’ve always had trouble with this one. Not that I think everyone deserves a participation ribbon, I’m just not competitive. ‘Winning” has never motivated me. I like to bring people with me, or make sure others don’t feel left behind or unseen; forgotten. But, I totally acknowledge that I’m on my own with this one. Not many will see my train of thought on this one, and that’s cool! HOWEVER, when someone tries to compete with me, and I acknowledge that I am not interested in competing, I feel very angry and diminished when I’m still unwillingly put in the competition. Leave me out of it. You win. (And, if you’re keeping track, you can see the cycle I create of letting a competitor ‘win’, thus labeling myself the ‘loser’. Sick shit here.)
The title of Mother has always been a sticky one full of boobie traps and shit jumping out at me. I will never give physical birth to a child. Some would argue that I am automatically out of the running to land the mother title. I can argue that not all women that give physical birth are parents. But they still get to keep the mother title. I will probably not ever have children of my own. Pregnancy is off the table, and I don’t have any plans to adopt any little monsters. I don’t rule out the possibility that I may be a step mother someday, but that is a whole other mother monster. But, one of the traits I am most proud of and so willing to nurture is my maternal qualities. Not the hand holding, cooking dinner for you, coddling maternal, but the deep, connectivity to care for those that I hold in my heart. I will take care of you. I will hold you accountable, and kick your ass. But I will also nurture you. Teach you. Comfort you. Protect you, fiercely. I am a Mom.
I’m Loki’s Mom. I love my little man.
The most difficult title for me recently is ‘Yoga Teacher’
*I am not meaning to offend or piss of any yoga teachers here…. This is me. I speak for no one else.*
The title ‘Yoga Teacher’ seems silly to me. I feel silly when I say or write it. It feels shallow. Juvenile even.
I don’t feel or have experienced it as a title that carries respect or dignity to it.
I’ve been asked what I do for work, and I respond teach yoga, or yoga teacher, and have been asked what my real job is. No really, this IS my real job. This is my career. This is what I feel I am meant to do, to offer.
I also feel a little silly putting ‘yoga teacher’ on official forms, like IRS documents, or any of my small business/LLC communications or applications.
I’ve tried fitness instructor, small business owner, but they feel just as silly.
There are some in the industry that use healer, or body worker; those don’t resonate with me at all.
Let me tell you about how it can be a very sexualized job title as well. The Yoga Teacher fantasy is a real thing out there friends. There are people out there who have fetishes or kinks around ‘yoga teachers’. They lurk out there, in the back corner of the room. Just this week, I was contacted through the website superficially about private sessions, but turned out to be a women wanting to pay me a lot of money to have sex with her husband for the fantasy.
(Off topic rant: the pay of a yoga teacher is a JOKE! No one does this for the money. I’m really not even surviving off my income, but I do this not for the money, but for the pure love I have for what I do. This is my purpose. But, it doesn’t buy me groceries. Or gas. Or the stability that I know I will be able to pay my rent this month. So, when someone offers me close to $500 for an hour, as sick as it is, it might be worth considering. But, no, I didn’t. I’m still broke as shit.)
I’ve only recently become interested in listening to podcasts. I feel like I missed the boat and I am way late to the podcast game, and it’s probably uncool now, but I’m here.
It started with the Kathryn Budig Free Cookies; so much good shit there! (Listen if you have a chance.)
Then a few others, but recently I have found a series called “Where Should We Begin”, with Esther Perel.
HOW HAVE I NOT KNOWN ABOUT THIS GENIUS WOMAN?!?!?!?!
I’m so addicted. I now binge podcasts. I’m so intrigued and fascinated and drawn to her ideas and approach to relationships and self identity. Something brought me to her work, and I’m going with it. I’m balls deep in doing the work that she offers. Balls Deep.
Anyway, back to what I was saying…….
As it relates to my title of Yoga Teacher, I am changing my official title to:
I like that. It feels right. I heard this in one of podcasts I listened to today. A woman was sad that she didn’t follow her dream of being a doctor. Through questions, Ms Perel deduced that it was the empathy she had and her ability to empathize with and care for people that she felt really wanted from the ‘Doctor” title.. She advised her to give herself the title of ‘Caregiver’. Holy Shit.
That’s what I am.
That's what I do.
I do more than teach yoga. I offer care. And safe space. And permission to be You. Just You. No matter what that means. I meet you where you are.
I am a Caregiver.
I’m going to try this title on for awhile. See how it fits.
Holly, Caregiver & Loki’s Mom