Transitions: Applying Lessons From Yoga to Real Life

It’s been a moment since I’ve posted. Those of you who have followed me for a while know that my husband Dan has been battling cancer, and that his health took a turn for the worse in early December. Since my last post in early March, Dan has had two more emergency hospitalizations resulting in the placement of both a tracheostomy and a feeding (PEG) tube.

As no further cancer treatments promised more than a 5% chance of efficacy, we made the choice several weeks ago to enter hospice. My time has been spent being present for him, managing the nursing care he is receiving at home and trying to maintain my own health and equilibrium.

One of the most important and least understood parts of a mature yoga practice involves transitions — the movement from one posture to another through conscious breathing and a steady mind. While we may be enamored of the athleticism of arm balances, handstands or pretzel-like twists, it is in this “in betweenness” that true discipline, strength and grace are cultivated.

I remind myself of this dally as Dan’s and my life together moves from one plane to another. He continues to amaze me with his gratitude for those he will leave behind, his concern that they embrace life and be not sad for him. Like the true yogi that he is, Dan is teaching me to be a better person as he transitions from this life, this body into whatever comes next. It is my honor to share his journey.

14 thoughts on “Transitions: Applying Lessons From Yoga to Real Life”

  1. Ah, I am with you as you tread along his path with Dan. I, too found my husband was Love itself- and he was no saint, or rather just a normal every day one. You both are in the Light and wherever it is we meet to share potent grief and gratitude in equal measure. Much love.


  2. I don’t know Dan. But I’m grateful for his story, and you both have all of my respect. I hope this transition goes as well as it possibly can. And I hope you both find time for a laugh or two. These are the times when you really need it.


  3. This is so lovely, and such a good reminder. “Life is in the layers, not on the litter,” a favorite poem by Stanley Kunitz. Heaps of blessing be with you and Dan as you transition and transform, together and apart.


  4. I never know what to say. I don’t have a yoga practice and I don’t know how it feels to die. But I will tell you that I can see grace from 3000 miles away and the sky to the east is filled with light. So much bravery. Thank you for this walk shared … Bless you both 🕯


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