Monday, May 30, 2016

Trust the Process

by Ange Stopperan

It was July 2006, my husband Casey and I had just gotten married and were packing-up the house to make a big move to Atlanta, Georgia.  My husband had taken a job with a large home improvement company headquarters based in Atlanta.  I was leaving my dream state of Colorado where I had moved to in 2002, but I’ve always been up for an adventure and the South intrigued me.  I was jumping in. We moved into our new place in the beginning of August. Wow. Let's just say that kind of humidity and heat were the first of many uncomfortable new experiences...

For the first two years in Atlanta my husband and I worked at the same company. There were so many adjustments from indy car racing traffic and long commutes home to the wondrous amounts of new bugs, as in insects, in our lives.  After work we’d usually sit on our back deck, which was surrounded by lush greens and beautiful Georgia pine trees.  One evening, my husband and I were sitting on the back deck and I was enjoying a glass of red wine as we told stories about our day.  The sky was growing darker and I suddenly I heard a tink sound. It sounded as if something hit my wine glass which had been sitting on the deck below my rocking chair.  

I picked up my glass to see what the sound was and guess who’s swimming in my nice glass of Cabernet?  

Yes, a cockroach. A huge huge cockroach.  Let’s just say it took me a long time before I drank red wine again. Our pest control guy, Alvin, became one of my favorite people to see every quarter when he came to service our house.
In 2008, when the housing market crashed, my husband was laid off and it looked like I eventually would be too. Life in Atlanta had became more uncertain and we decided to put our house on the market with the plan to move back to Colorado.  For the next two years we lowered the price on our house, switched real estate agents four times, repainted the walls and considered a short sale. Our home would not sell. I felt captive, I wanted to leave so badly, but I couldn’t.  Emotionally I was a wreck. 

I’m usually so clear about my path and following my heart, but during those two years I was lost and unsure of what I was doing or why I was where I was.  My body became stressed and my mind more and more confused. I didn’t understand why we couldn’t sell our house and move on.

Throughout the year I tried to justify why we moved to Atlanta. I became very closed hearted and frustrated. I could not grapple with why we moved all the way to Georgia to get laid off?!? It troubled me every single day. Every long drive into the city these thoughts were on my mind.  The situation took over my mind, body and soul.  At the time, I was a Project Manager, and my job was to resolve problems with effective timelines. Why couldn’t I do that in my own life? Each and every day I was blaming the situation for my unhappiness.  To top it all off, in 2010 I was officially laid off.  
One morning, my mom called me and offered to fly me to Arizona because she had two tickets to attend a workshop with Wayne Dyer and Louise Hay, two extraordinary authors she had found.  Wayne Dyer is an author and speaker in the fields of self-development and spiritual growth and Louise Hay is a motivational author and founder of Hay House Publications.  I had bought their books while at the workshop and when I arrived home I began reading them.  One day, I was reading “You Can Heal Your Life” by Louise Hay and I read the line, “Trust the process of life”.  This quote became imbedded in me and changed the way I thought about my current situation and the future. I realized that I was in Atlanta for a reason and I needed to trust why my family and I were on this path. I made a conscious shift that day to open my heart to the place where I lived in this moment and dig my feet deep into the soil.  I wrote this quote on post-it notes and placed them on my bathroom mirror, the dashboard in my car and on my desk at a new job I had recently started.

Once I had made the decision to live from a place of openness and curiosity the doors of opportunity began to open.  I felt like I was on a more grounded path and my shift in consciousness lifted my eyes to the beauty of the South.  From the tall Georgia pines to the people I connected with, I began to find my roots. I made close friends and both my husband and I took new jobs that provided a positive work environment.  I began a 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training and found community.  I started teaching yoga which lead me to amazing students who are still very near and dear to my heart. With my husband, I discovered hikes, restaurants and yoga studios. I studied the history of the place I was in, traveled and relished in southern traditions. My life became abundant with friendship and generous exchanges. In 2012, I gave birth to my son and witnessed our community gather around us with more support and love than I could ever have imagined.  

Ange's Atlanta Yoga Kula

The Buddha says, “No one saves us but ourselves. No one can and no one may.  We ourselves must walk the path.”

I honestly believe that I wound up in Georgia to learn to trust the process and open my heart to the unexpected nature of life.  We have the beautiful opportunity to hike the metaphorical mountain of life and  we have to trust our path and step into the unknown, which can be scary and magnificent at the same time. We don’t know who we will meet around the next corner, nor what view we may see on the next summit.  We might get lost in the woods and frustrated with the map we brought. But, we can find peace in knowing that we have the map of Trust in our back pocket.  Let us trust that there is a lesson in every twist and turn, base and peak, grove and opening, lost moment and triumphant summit.
In 2015 we decided to adventure back to Colorado.  Our house sold the day we listed it and we moved three weeks later.  It was the hardest move I’ve had to make because I was leaving an amazing community rich with heart-full and hard-earned connections, but we knew Colorado was calling and it was time to open up to the next experience.

Ange is a Yoga and Paddle Board Yoga Teacher and creator of the Mantra Series coaching program.   Ange began her yoga path in 1999 and became a teacher in 2012 receiving her 200-hour certification through Peachtree Yoga Center in Atlanta, GA.  She is currently studying at the Colorado School of Yoga for her 300-hour certification.  Off the mat, Ange loves being outside hiking and camping with her family.  Ange lives in Northern Colorado with her husband, son and dog.  Ange is continually inspired everyday by the human spirit and how we show-up on and off the mat.