Ganesha, the friendly and loving elephant God, who is placed in front of many doors and entrances, the remover of obstacles, the gatekeeper. Ganesha, like other Hindu deities, invites us to connect with this energy within us, not to worship outside of us. The start of a new beginning like a new year is the perfect time to connect with Ganesha’s playful energy and attitude. Ganesha isn’t only seen as a remover of obstacles (inner and outer), but also as the one who places obstacles on your path for you to grow and learn.
2018 has been a year with many challenges and obstacles while remigrating to The Netherlands after 7 years of living in New Zealand. I arrived in New Zealand with two suitcases filled with clothes and shoes and 1 year work and holiday visa while being crazily in love with a special Dutch-Kiwi guy. After almost 7 years far away from my family, I came back with a family myself and a container filled with belongings. Last year we sold our home in New Zealand and bought a home in The Netherlands, we packed all our belongings and unpacked those 6 months later. On my birthday, the 17th of June we said goodbye to Whangarei, the birth place of both our sons and the next day we boarded an airplane only uncertainty ahead. Those long flights, first to Bali and then to The Netherlands, aren’t something we are keen to repeat in a hurry. My eldest son still tells us he doesn’t want to go on an airplane, because it is “too long”. I am still traumatised by the memory of having to change his poo nappy while screaming and kicking in a tiny airplane toilet when he finally did poo after a long time of holding it.
Fortunately, we experienced two summers in a row last year! And Holland had the most warm and beautiful summer in years, as if, with all those obstacles being faced and overcome, ‘something’ let us know we were supported. My husband found work easily (we also got married in 5 minutes on a Monday morning last year) and my family has been extremely supportive and helpful. We ended up living in a small cabin on a camping for 5 months. Let’s just say that I am glad this tiny house living experience with two active young boys, is over. Those boys + my crazy mind, sensitivity, worries, thoughts and emotions have giving us many sleepless nights last year. Being sleep deprived and then still not being able to sleep is something I don’t wish upon anyone.
So 2019, I am so ready for you! The year of plenty of new beginnings: new country, new surroundings, new home, new yoga studio and community, new pre-school for my eldest, new social network to build up, new jobs. Even though I am very happy that we made the decision to move back to The Netherlands, I also have many sweet memories to New Zealand and all the friends and family living there we have to miss now. Hence the decision to (try) keep writing this blog in English, to stay in touch and connected. So please excuse spellings errors and mistakes and embrace my perfectly imperfect self. My intention for 2019 is to feel and experience JOY in every aspect of my life. Something I have missed a lot last year.
Ganesha with his beautiful round belly represents abundance as well as the ability to digest emotions, food, impressions and thoughts with ease. He also symbolizes strength and stability. Qualities I would like to call upon in this year of new beginnings. Ganesha, also known as Ganapati, is often seen with a friendly smile on his face, reminding me to love myself and others, especially when life throws you curveballs. When the going gets tough Ganesha might have placed obstacles on my path for those stubborn parts in me which can do with some more learning. You could see it as tough love.
Ganesha has big ears to remind me to listen carefully and his trunk is a reminder to be careful what you put in your body and mind, be discriminative. If I think of elephants, I also think of playfulness and strength and the courage to keep going in the direction of your heart and to embrace an attitude of playfulness in all you do. When you look at Ganesha what do you see and feel? Yoga is for all of us a unique experience and yet the same. “Same, same, but different”, they would say in many countries where you can find elephants in the wild. What I have realized (again) in the last year, is that yoga keeps me sane, joyful, happy and inspired. Therefore I am very grateful I have yet found another wonderful yoga studio to share my passion for this powerful practice. You can join met on Saturday mornings 10am at MK Studio in Waalwijk.
From my Ganesha-heart to yours,