I remember taking my first yoga class 4 years ago. It was invigorating and I loved it so much I signed up to go again, eventually getting passes to go regularly. Soon after taking a couple classes I realized that I was the only black woman attending. Instances like this never bother me until I got deeper into my practice. I could feel the stares growing into my skin every session (especially when my fro is screaming wild melodies) which made it harder and harder to go back. But I thought “hey, you’re overreacting, you need this”.
It was clear I was token when someone asked me “how did you get into yoga?” leading into talks of diversity as if I had all of the answers of where are people like me.
Dropping The Bomb
Then I dropped the yoga bomb in conversation and of course the phrase “that’s a white people’s thing” came into the fold with m peers of color. Yoga is something I practice for my well being and mental health so how dare they shame me? ! I was so disgusted and hurt to know that my “friends” didn’t take the chance to broaden their minds and understand.
On the train ride home I took that energy and fueled a search of any and everything yoga surrounding people of color and then that’s when Black Girl In Om happened to me. It’s amazing what getting lost in Instagram does for you. I was in awe.
BGIO is more than just a publication, podcasts, and yoga sessions in the middle of parks. Creators Lauren Ash and Zakkiyyah Najeebah dished this platform and safe place for women of color to realize its okay. Take that journey to self love, to better mental health, to a better lifestyle.
It was refreshing to see women like me.
All of this to say thank you Lauren and Zakkiyyah. I appreciate you!