I started doing yoga as a way to get in shape and to mix up my regular workout. I used to do a ton of cardio and weights, but after I graduated from college and no longer needed to for my cheerleading team I wanted to transition into something a little less impact heavy. Originally, I was using videos on youtube on and off at the urging of a former partner.
Then, this past fall, I had a major anxiety attack. I'm a trauma survivor from some really heavy stuff that happened when I was a kid, and I was triggered by someone very close to me. To be fair, it was a really high stress time in my life--I work in politics and it was election season, I was studying for the LSAT, and my partner had just moved to another coast a few months prior and we'd gotten into a huge blowout--the combination of all of the things was just too much.
It absolutely wreaked me. I was a mess for weeks--in and out of depression, coasting through work, emotionally unavailable, and I was isolating myself from my social network.
In a moment of clarity, I forced myself out of bed one morning and into a local yoga studio and never looked back. I started seeing a therapist and it helped (God, did it help) but yoga was the one thing that grounded me until I found a therapist that I liked and wanted to see regularly. I dove into it and started going to a class 2-3 times/wk. Being able to concentrate on my body and breathe was life-saving. It felt like coming up for air--I hadn't even realized how long I'd been drowning. My mat became my quiet place.
I've slowly gotten away from it in the past few weeks (bad breakup and subsequent post-breakup spiral) but I'm really wanting to deepen my practice this year. It's become a form for therapy for me.