Wa Yo Yogi

Leanne Kitteridge's adventures in Yoga

Om namah shivaya October 16, 2007

Filed under: Anusara,Japan,travel yoga,yoga — shibuiyoga @ 11:22 pm
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Leanne Kitteridge

I just received an email. I am beyond ecstatic.
I have been dreaming of training with John in Japan since I studied with him in Maui last year. I had actually tried to go as an assistant by offering to be a gopher and translator but my help was not needed.

I was a little disappointed but I was so interested in hearing the practice languaged in Japanese and meeting the Japanese kula so I applied for the teacher training component. Unfortunately, after the applications were in, they posted the training price- it was more than double the price of training in North America. I was floored. How was I going to afford this training?

I ended up swallowing my pride and doing something I have never done before- applying for a scholarship. I have always been able to pay for my training before, but now I realized that I needed some help. Off went the letters and my hours etc. and I left the rest up to the universe. Then during this whole period something else happened- I found a lump in my breast.

My mother is a breast cancer survivor. I assumed this was nothing more than a milk duct or something but after a mammogram things got very serious, very quickly. I had an ultrasound and was then booked for a biopsy. Maybe I wouldn’t have been so panicky but the radiologist said cancer so many times during the tests that it beat like a little drum in the back of my mind.

I sat for two weeks wondering if I had cancer. How would my family manage? How would it affect my yoga? Would I be disfigured? How would chemo affect my body? I wasn’t scared- as in the freaking out, pull your hair out kind of scared- but more scared in a heaviness in the pit of my stomach which would sometimes bubble to the surface in a little gasp. The bubble sometimes brought a tightening of the face and reigning in of tears that threatened to fall. I kept it together though- mostly. My kula and my family made me feel that I was not alone- no matter what I was supported.

I decided that if it was cancer I would go to Japan with or without a scholarship and deal with the disease when I returned. That is when I realized how important this was to me- to be able to bring the two passions in my life together- Japan and Yoga.

Last week I found out the lump was benign. Today I found out I received a scholarship.

Om namah shivaya

I am so blessed.


4 Responses to “Om namah shivaya”

  1. Elsie Says:


    I am so happy for you in all ways
    I am deeply thankful that you are getting a chance to do what you love, to do that which fills your heart and that you took the chance to step even deeper, now matter what!

    ohm Namah Shivaya

    blessings to you

    Thrilled and ecstatic that you are exactly were you need to be right now, shining bright in the face of it all 🙂

    huuuuuuuuuuge hug to you!

  2. Bethany Butler-Wong Says:


    I am so happy for you for both pieces of good news! Poor you, being in suspense about this lump for two weeks! Thanks God it’s benign. And congratulations on getting the scholarship – that’s fantastic news too! You must be so excited! I can’t remember when it is, but good luck!

    I must get to bed as I leave super-early to TO tomorrow. Take care of yourself (I know you do) and thanks for being such an inspiration for the rest of us!
    Love Bethany 🙂

  3. Anuschka Says:

    You have been busy as a bee as usual…congratulations about the scholarship, how long is the training? You are so passionate about everything you do I am not surprised it has all turned out for the best, but indeed it is exciting news and I look forward to hearing how it goes.

    As far as the lump, it is certainly scary,all the more so because in this day in age we are bombarded with depressing statistics, add to that your family history and flying which we all know leads to extra cosmic radiation exposure…I am glad your story had a happy ending, what a relief!

    Looking forward to your updates,

  4. Lica Says:

    Hi Leanne,

    I had no idea you were going through all this! What a trooper you are. I’m so happy that everything worked out. Goodluck with the training! Great website, by the way. I love the pictures.

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