I was struck while driving last weekend at the show of support for Ukraine. There were so many billboards with the Ukrainian flag, with statements like “We Stand With Ukraine,” and it warmed my heart. In many instances the sunflower, the national flower of Ukraine, was also on display. I also saw many members of Congress sporting sunflower pins at the State of the Union last week as a sign of support. So this sweet, sunny flower is getting a lot of attention lately.

And then I came across this poem, and knew where to dive in, how to craft my intention for the class:

Be like a sunflower,

Stand tall,

Be resilient,

Never let your colors fade,

Bend but do not break,

Always turn your face to the sunlight.

So in last week’s practice I spoke about resilience–the grit of your life that allows for the glory. That ability to dust yourself off and keep moving forward, adapting, despite being uncomfortable. We learn so much about being uncomfortable on our mat, working on finding comfort within the discomfort, this is in some small way resilience training–bending both physically and mentally but not breaking.

In keeping with the times, we reflect on our own resilience, appreciating the rocky journey it took to arrive on your mat or to your life today, all the ups and downs of your life, all of that grit. And we also send prayers for continued resilience and strength to the Ukrainian people.

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