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A MESSAGE FROM THE FOUNDER

I began my journey as far back as I can remember... Always feeling like the black sheep and barely agreeing with anything I was taught throughout my Catholic school years. I remember moments as far back as kindergarten, where I was taught one thing about religion and believed another. If I tried to voice my perspectives, I was quickly shut down. I was taught to keep quiet, hold back, and not express what I REALLY believed because it didn't align with what I was told. Not to mention years of bullying from peers throughout middle school, abusive relationships in my late teens and through my 20's, substances and workaholism to numb the pain of suicidal thoughts in my 20's. Never really having compassion or love for myself in all of it. I felt so much for myself, for others, for the world, and didn't know how to manage it all. So much time keeping quiet, holding in, hard to breathe, mind so busy, as if I had duck tape over my mouth and nose, rope constricting my arms and ribs, and angry bees at war in my mind.

Yoga has been a part of my life since college and continued to come in and out of my life until I was 28. I have this vivid memory of being in a yoga class and thinking "What did I get myself into? This is stupid. I'm never doing this again. (Insert all the curse words you can think of in English and Spanish here)" and I stayed til the end - savasana. Bursting into uncontrollable tears in that moment of surrender. I knew this was only the beginning, and I had to persist even though I had no idea why I was emotional. This kept happening... not all the time but plenty of times. Sometimes it was in a spinal twist, sometimes it was in a backbend, sometimes it was in child's pose. It varied and I didn't know what it was or why it was. All I knew was that it was.

Fast forward to the age of 30 when I took a workshop series on the chakra system with Terri Cooper - one of my greatest mentors. Every emotional experience I've ever had in yoga began to make sense. I was then able to recognize how past trauma is stored in our physical and energetic bodies and how yoga is a way to move this stagnant energy so that we can process and heal. I was healing through yoga and didn't even know it! 

Since then I've healed sooooooo much - the grief I felt with the death of my grandmother, the betrayal I felt with my former brother in law, the resentment I felt toward the Catholic church and many organized religions, the anger I felt toward all of those that bullied me in grade school, the shame I felt for being queer, the depression I felt from my suicidal thoughts, and the despair I felt from all that my family endured as refugees to come here for a better life. 

All this healing has allowed me to step more fully into who I truly am and form deeper connections with my family, friends, and partners. There is always inner work to be done and there is always inner peace and love to be felt and experienced. I remembered how it's possible to feel so heavy, ungrounded, uncomfortable, and still be present to the beauty, love, and kindness that's within me. 

So being this black sheep means I'm attracted to all the dark and dirty. Trauma work is so beautiful and empowering to me. I venture to the ugliest places within myself, support others in doing the same. Like a lump of coal with a diamond in the center, once you uncover what you thought was ugly holds so much beauty, power, and grace.

Our greatest gifts (and linked to each and every one of our sacred medicine) come from the darkest, dirtiest, ugliest, and most traumatic parts of ourselves. Holding space for that is where our true magic lies, our truest representation of self-love itself. All the light about us is easy to love... and if you can love yourself THERE - in your shadow - that is self-love.

Love, shadow & light,

Alex
 

ABOUT SHADOW & LIGHT

Shadow & Light Yoga, Inc. is more than just prayer beads, sweet smelling aromas, and stones. It’s the story about you and what your body, mind and soul hold. It’s your essence. Your divine awakening. Your opportunity to nurture yourself, hold space for yourself, and indulge in your personal healing power.

We offer a number of healing modalities to balance your chakras: yoga and meditation, mala necklaces and bracelets, essential oil blends, and stones. Each of these chakra healing modalities are a gift that you give yourself. To tune into what’s helping or hindering you. To channel and confront your shadow so that you can let go and become one with both shadow and light.

Each chakra opener is carefully crafted to resonate 100% with that particular chakra. Inviting the element it’s associated with through touch, smell, sound, sight, and thought, you are better equipped to directly channel that chakra energy and fine tune it.

Balance. Stabilize. Go with the flow. Relax and let go. You are the creator of your life and your truth. Believe it. Fulfill it. Be it.