One of our very first clients tells the story of how she came to Merkaz Panim: She had been going through fertility treatments, unsuccessfully, for a few years by then and had yet another one coming up. She was walking through the hospital parking lot when all of a sudden she stopped and said to herself “please help me”. A plea to god, to the universe, to herself…?
When she entered the IVF ward she was met by the head nurse who told her about Merkaz Panim. “I don’t know how it happened, but it did”. She is a Yoga instructor, and so one of the most intense moments with her was when she said “I haven’t taken a deep breath in 4 years”.
It is so important to have the ability to stop, to breath, to connect with and experience your body not as a burden or something alienated or that which has failed you but as something that holds you together, that you can relate to, a part of yourself that you can come to know and even to love.
In our Yoga classes at Merkaz Panim we emphasize breathing, relaxation, being in a place where we can feel good with our bodies – especially at a time when the body may be a bearer of pain, discomfort and lack of control and privacy.
Of course we hope the yoga exercises will be of help to our patients for many years to come, but the here and now is also enough – to learn to breathe again, to use this tool that we were born with and that is always with us.
There are times when we need a reminder to make use of these simple things that are a part of us, and that is what we strive to do through yoga.