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If you want to use this story in any way, please omit my last name.

I started practicing ashtanga yoga occasionally 1 1/2 years ago, primarily because it made me feel better physically. This spring I committed to more regular practice to help with healing from child sexual abuse. This spring, at age 49, I finally came to understand that what I had considered my grand romance, was really sexual abuse. When my married "lover" started grooming me, I was 10 and he was 55. He started kissing me inappropriately when I was 14 and our relationship continued in different ways until he died an ugly death of Shy-Drager Syndrome when I was 28. Shifting my perception of the relationship and understanding it damaged me has been a painful process. Yoga, along with the support of a great therapist, has helped me immensely! I start most yoga sessions with the intention of seeking healing, and have found it to be both a calming and strengthening experience. As a result of yoga, therapy, and hard work, I am reclaiming peace and joy in my life! I am re-committing to my Christian faith, and re-claiming the "New Age" philosophies shared with me by my abuser throughout our relationship. It is wonderful to have found some balance in my feelings about my abuser -- I can now see him as damaged and acknowledge how he hurt me, yet still love the good things about him and incorporate them into my life.

Now I look forward to turning 50,to strengthening my marriage, and discovering what comes next in my life! I will be sticking with my yoga practice!