I have been working as a Graphic Designer for over 10 year and in the last few years I had the chance to experience a key role in English for the first time, my second language, for the yoga retreat where I was also living. This opportunity made me grow stronger and gain self confidence by upgrading my marketing skills as well as my entire commerce vocabulary. At the same time I realised how much I was seeking new challenges and a brand new beginning in my life which I was sure was waiting for me right past the corner of my desk.
For this reason I decided to resign from that role after the Yoga Festival and that very weekend was my last one in the marketing office.
I was finally unemployed and ready to place all my energies into my new freelance project as a designer. Nevertheless, timing was not on my side. I was completely unaware of the worldwide situation and how much it was affecting everything around on a massive scale, including my well organized plan.
Only three days after I quitted, the Government decided to shut the borders and prepare for our first four weeks in lockdown with immediate effect. I didn’t know what to do or how to feel. I was just about to enjoy my freedom and suddenly I was already stuck, over thinking about how I could manage this problem without any income to support my life with no job.
On the other hand, I somehow felt blessed to have unlimited time to dedicate to myself because I couldn’t work on any appropriate solutions carefully planned.
My family back in Italy was already experiencing their third week locked into their apartments. They kept updating me regarding their situations and how much the virus was destroying some of our friends’ families by permanently taking away their illed relatives. This global infection never felt so real and powerful until people I personally know where dealing with it face to face.
Contrarily, I somehow felt blessed for my situation, unemployed but weirdly happy. It was hard for me to feel this way without judging my emotions, but there was no other place where I could have been stuck for this unusual experience.
The yoga retreat put in place several new rules to face this unique setting, I had to move to a different kitchen to avoid a big crowd of people sharing the same facility all at once. This was my only concern, this took me away from my friend and I was so worried I couldn’t find any other chance to enjoy those calm days with Rawhiti’s company.
However, we were set in 19 acres of native New Zealand bush and I was sure she could be still part of my ‘bubble’ somewhere there to share feelings and emotions around the situation; in a way or another we had to make it work and so we did.
We both requested to have one plot each where we could grow our vegetables over the lockdown and surprisingly we found out we were garden neighbours. That was it, our ultimate ‘bubble’ spot where we were meeting every morning to water our plants, sharing our thoughts and learning new skills about gardening.
In addition, we decided to secretly meet every afternoon to enjoy outdoor yoga classes just for ourselves surrounded by trees and birds.
Meanwhile, the marketing team was still working and they decided to take action too by implementing some online classes available for the whole community to keep in contact with one another through our devices and ensure that no one felt alone or bored.
This was another great opportunity for us to collaborate again on our mindful project and to bring Art Yoga on the screen of Kawai Purapura. Our contribution took place straight away and since we didn’t know how long the lockdown was going to force us there, we planned a whole journey through the seven Chakras.
Our ‘bubble’ got an official confirmation which allowed us to be together within the community even if formally just once a week.
Nothing discouraged us, not even when Rawhiti fell down in a slippery path into the bush and forced her to slow down for an entire week of bandage on her arm and leg.
I could have reacted in a completely bitter way about how the world was turning upside down and messing up with my good intentions for the nearest future. Instead, I slowly accepted the situation without knowing the consequences of this new era we were experiencing including how long it was going to last and if I was ever going to find a job to make a living.
I was rewarded for being stuck surrounded by calm nature because it silently helped me plant the seed for a new chapter of my life. I still see it patiently growing everyday and I am grateful it took me where I am right now where I couldn’t even expect to be so far. But this is another story.
During those seven long weeks, Art Yoga started to flourish strongly, cultivated by our love for ourselves and the necessity to support others on a deeper level of mindfulness.
To be continued…
LAUGH. SMILE. DANCE