The End?

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I began writing athayoganusasanam in January of 2011. I was brimming with excitement and inspiration. I had only been practicing Ashtanga for a few months and I was madly in love! I had recently moved back to my hometown with my new boyfriend. We lived in a beautiful (free!) apartment, a block away from the yoga shala. We had a tiny garden and were walking distance from just about everything we needed. My family lived close by and life was simple and easy. I didn’t have enough work at first and so I started this little blog. It kept me busy and was a wonderful outlet for creativity and for self-reflection.

I had so much to share. I felt deeply compelled to write all the time…about my love of cooking, my travels, my life, my new career in the healing arts, and of course most of all, about yoga – my practice and my teaching of it.

In the course of these three full-to-bursting years, Lila blog has chronicled the span of my early 20s into my late 20s. From a boyfriend, to a fiance to a husband. From teaching eight yoga classes a week down to only one. From a massage therapist to a florist with a huge wedding at the center of it all. From finding a teacher to losing him. From injuring myself to healing myself. From one home in Charlottesville to another in Denver, with two epic trips to India in between, plus countless weeks and weekends gallavanting all around this big old country. And that’s just the start of it!

Over these years, I have been surprised and thrilled by all the friendly support and enthusiastic readership. I’ve picked up a few blog sponsors along the way and contributed my writing to other venues as well. I also have occasionally received harsh criticisms and snarky comments, but that’s the internet, eh?

But let me be honest with you, dear readers, for months now this blog has felt like a heavy ball and chain dragging behind me. I only feel the spark of inspiration to write once every few weeks, if that. And even if I have an idea (like the nine pieces unfinished in my “drafts”), I don’t have the mental energy or time at the end of the workday to actually express my thoughts eloquently. Sigh…

I feel guilty that I don’t write as regularly as I used to and that my pieces are often lacking in pizazz. I also feel bad that the amount of yoga-related content has decreased so much. Although I never intended this to be a blog solely about yoga, it was always the topic that drew in the most readers. I am still an Ashtangi and a Kundalini yogini through and through, but my interest in writing (and reading for that matter) on yoga has diminished to nil.

More than anything, I dislike the amount of time (much of it wasted) that I spend in front of this screen and how it consumes hours that could be much better spent outside, playing with my husband, my friends, and my dog.

Writing a blog has altered the way I experience my daily life in a way that makes me a bit queasy. Instead of processing an emotional challenge brought to light by my yoga practice, or being present enjoying a fun afternoon in the mountains, or cooking spontaneously with vegetable peels thrown pell-mell all over my kitchen counter, I funnel my experiences visually and mentally through the lens of this blog and through social media. I ponder, “Should I try to write down this recipe for a post?”… “Maybe I should have Thad photograph me doing this?”…”How could I write about this personal difficulty without over-sharing too much.”… “What about my practice is inspiring/challenging right now and how can I turn this into something blog-worthy?”…. and on and on.

I want to live my life instead of blog about it. I want to just get on my mat every day and move through my practice without having to force it into being some profound teaching/learning experience. I want to spend my evenings sharing quality time with my loved ones instead of staring at a blank screen wondering what to write or how to attract more readers. I’m interested in being, living, creating, instead of documenting, analyzing and branding.

There are many wonderful bloggers out there, bloggers with so much more to share that I have right now. It’s a huge lovely interweb-world of fancy videos and sleek web design and I’m simply not up for it. Chalk it up to insecurity, but I’ve often doubted myself in this whole game of blogging. See, I am not a health coach, or a master healer, or registered nutritionist or “life coach”, I am not a celebri-yogi or a gifted photographer. I am simply a young woman on a journey.

We only have so much we can give and everything has its season. I guess you could say that I’m experiencing a predicament that all women face…I’m learning (with many bumps along the way) how to find balance in my home-work-family life. I’m discovering that difficult choices must be made in order to stay healthy and happy – questions regarding what to hold on to, what to nourish, what to simply put up with and what to release.

Managing a household, working five days a week, grocery shopping, cleaning, cooking healthy meals every day, caring for a pet, loving and supporting my husband while he is in school full-time, nurturing friendships and creative pursuits, writing this blog, dreaming up a new business to launch this year, all on top of a daily hour and a half yoga practice….well, it’s a lot to juggle!

Somedays this balancing act is harder than others, but I know, in my heart of hearts, that I will not/can not disregard my own self-care or sacrifice the activities that bring me joy in my attempts to “do it all”. And so, with this acknowledgement, I’ve had to make a choice about what can stay and what has to go.

After much deliberation and reflection, I am announcing today the closing of Lila blog. I write “The End” with a question mark because I know that nothing is permanent and I certainly do not know what the future will bring. But for now, I will not be writing any more on this platform. I plan to keep the site active online so that past posts are available for readers. The Facebook and Twitter accounts for Lila will be shut down in a few days.

I am not disappearing from the internet all together though. You can still find me on Instagram and on Pinterest. And who knows? Maybe I’ll be back at it again on Lila in a six months or a year. Or perhaps I’ll start a new blog with a whole new focus, maybe something more oriented in my field of business, floral design and styling.

But today, my dear readers, I bid adieu and offer my sincerest gratitude to you and to my gracious sponsors.

Thank you for your readership, your comments, your emails, your friendship and your presence.

The only thing that has kept this little bloggy going for so long has been you.

With oh so much love and many blessings,

Frances

 

 

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14 thoughts on “The End?

  1. Bless you on your journey and for recognising that not all things are permanent, it will feel so liberating when you let it go, enjoy the next phase of your journey and thank-you for sharing so honestly your ups and downs in life, It has been endearing from a readers perspective and sometimes like looking in a mirror, so you say you are not a ‘whatever’ label but you have touched and helped many people along the way. Warmest wishes to you.

  2. Good luck Frances! Enjoy living your life with your family, friends and dog. Blogging is hard work and takes a lot of dedication. I struggled for months before I decided to start a new blogging adventure, leaving the one that I had loved and built for 3 years. It is hard to walk away, but you know when it is time to do so. I have thoroughly enjoyed your posts and will stop by to be inspired through your archives. Thank you for sharing your journey and for your inspiring words.

  3. Hey – I just wanted to write and say thankyou for your blog, I’ve enjoyed reading it. I am the mother of two children and an ashtangi with a daily practice and i know well the difficulties of sustaining life / career / practice / relationships / happiness. Sounds like you’ve made a wise choice. Thankyou for sharing and good luck. x

  4. I have enjoyed reading your blog, Frances, and I hear you when you speak of having to filter your experiences when you blog, and blogging taking you away from other things. This is also kind of why I blog a lot less these days. But I also can’t help thinking: There is no rule that says that if you have a blog, you have to write a new post every x number of days, months, or even years. So why not just leave this blog open, and simply write whenever you have time, or whenever you feel like it? This way, the platform remains here for you whenever you want to use it. I know that it may feel strange to leave a blog “unattended” or “hanging” like that, but such is life sometimes, no? :-)

  5. Frances! I am sad to hear you won’t be writing on here anymore. I have very much enjoyed your posts and they have gotten me through some tough times in practice. Miss you already!

  6. Frances

    “Writing a blog has altered the way I experience my daily life in a way that makes me a bit queasy”

    That queasy feeling was telling you something very important.

    It’s so easy to let writing or photography become the filter through which we have our everyday experiences when they are at best just a mirror. I realised this when I started asana practice at the age of 42 – that somehow I had actually started living my own life and was no longer in a documentary (in my head) about my life. I could not have done this in my twenties.

    I’m impressed that you let yourself see the dukkha of back to front living.

    Thanks and good luck,

    Richard

  7. It’s only today, Feb-5th, that I stumbled upon your blog for the first time only to read your goodbye. So Perfect a reflection to me about the choices I am making in my own Life. Thank you Ms Frances. May you gallop (it’s the year of the Horse after all) into the glory of your living Life.

  8. Dear Frances, I’ve enjoyed your blog very much, although I only discovered it in recent months. Follow your heart. If Lila Blog becomes a place where you pop up once in a while to write something when you’re feeling inspired to blog, I will always look forward to your posts! Best wishes to you! Roanna

  9. Hahaha, I was about to address you as Lila….then saw that others mentioned your true name, Frances. I only discovered your blog recently, & have only read it intermittently. Odd that I should chance upon this last post just now. I’m SO glad I read it. In spite of your mention of some insecurity about your blogging – I think you have a wonderful writing style. Relaxed, authentic, confident, real, open, true, connected & connecting. Seems you’re making a very wise, appropriate & timely decision.

    It was really interesting reading how the blog gradually became burdensome (having been such a joy for so long), taking you away from being in the present. I could really resonate with that, I was obsessed with photography some years ago, and whenever something beautiful, meaningful, momentous or just funny occurred – I would have barely a split second of it – then I’d whip my camera out to ‘capture’ it for posterity, Hmmmmm, maybe posterity benefitted, but I really didn’t. I saw it happening, but it took a while to give up – never regretted it.

    I’m glad you’re leaving the blog open in case you feel moved to write at some point in the furture. Good luck and enjoy the ride :-)

    Jane Sleven (Goa, South India, teaching Yoga at Brahmani Yoga, Goa)

  10. Frances,
    . You have given through your blog a beautiful connection with those who know you. As someone who walked away from ministry, I applaud your focus on the beautiful energy and cosmic life you share with those in your midst. I celebrate with you your progression on the journey do all who adore you because of your passion for giving.
    In recent weeks I have begun practicing Kundalini yoga with you as my guide via your you tube video.. Last week I began a new life after separating with my spouse I look forward to your instruction tomorrow as my Kundalini yoga teacher online, filled with the comforting knowlledge that you continue to give and receive in powerful and wonderful ways. You share the gift of what it means to share boundless love in a world that calls us to discern how we share this love bound by time. Bless be the tie that binds us this day and all the days to come.
    Namaste and Blessings,
    John

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