I’ve decided that I am not going to be writing about my past year of travels in order. It becomes too complicated, too structured and a lot of the time unmotiving, rather than reflecting upon my past year and feeling inspired that day by a certain experience.
For those of you unaware, I am currently living in South Australia, working in a factory grading potatoes and onions (the reason?: full story here). Anyway, today was my day off and having purchased a yoga mat at the weekend, I decided this morning I really needed that yoga hit. Rewind this time last year, and you would not see me getting that sudden urge to do yoga. Yes, I went along to a couple of classes at the gym but I was unable to get to grips with it. I was constantly being, what I felt was, “being told off” for my awkward attempts of each position and I left feeling crappy and useless.
I’ve learned now that is definitely the opposite of what yoga should do.
This year, I had the most amazing opportunity to set up home for two months in a small, charming Ecuadorian surf town called Ayampe. After travelling for over three quarters of a year, I felt tired. I needed somewhere to recover and recoup.
Ayampe was my saviour. When I wasn’t working in an organic cafe, Otra Ola, I practised yoga in the morning and surfing in the afternoon. The first day I showed up to class I was asked if this was my first time. No, I was just very bad at it.
I was eager to learn more about yoga and it’s practice. I found I was actively searching for more knowledge every single day. Luckily, I shared a house with the yoga teacher (an absolute doll) who patiently answered all of my questions. This reflected in my practice too. I was able to understand more about each position, the flow and the importance of breathing.
I was able to start supporting myself in positions such as the bridge and even work towards headstands. Something that I thought wasn’t even possible. And I am not even exaggerating my incapability. I am well known not to have any upper body strength
It also started to have an impact on my daily life. My attitude, my outlook to life. And even others around me saw the difference. Interestingly enough, the yoga teacher commented that the way I practised yoga was also how I led my life. I’ve always been carefree, confident and adaptable but I began to realise my worth and the energy I bring to others.
It was like a snowbomb. Countless people came up to me to thank me. Thank me for what?, I asked each time. My positive energy. My free spirit. My happiness in life. And being inspiring.
It seems strange to me to write this statement down on paper. And even now, I feel embarrassed for saying out loud others’ thoughts. As if it’s a big headed thing to admit.
But I also learned in Ayampe, that this is my gift. A gift I can give and share with others.
Before I left the UK, I knew I wanted to set up my own company but I could not figure out what I wanted to do. It was something I needed to figure out over time.
It was whilst living in Ayampe that I met so many inspiring women. From Janne Robinson, the mastermind behind “Here’s to the women who don’t give a fuck” and whose poetry I now heavily follow to Stine Graubæk, a plant-based health coach who left her life in Denmark for love in the Galapagos Islands.
My passion lies in Polycystic Ovaries and trying to beat it’s bad ass. My openness on the topic has allowed this blog to transform itself into what once was a place to share my general thoughts to something much more niche. An inspiring space for women also facing the same battle.
I learned that being kind to my body – through yoga, meditating, surfing and eating right – made me feel great. Almost invincible and strong in mind, body and soul. This fed into my career goals and I left the town knowing exactly what I wanted to do. I wanted to use my “gift” to inspire and help women suffering from PCOS on a much larger scale than just my blog. I want to become a Health Coach. And I know I can get there.
Yes, it means I need to retrain, which will take time and money, but I know that this time next year I will have made my dream a reality. People may think I am foolish – I am aware that the majority of new businesses fail within the first year – but I feel my passion really will drive this forward and will be a success.
Ayampe has become such a special place in my heart. I could say it changed me completely, but the truth is I am the same; just more aware, more patient and more giving.